WHEN Marian Simpson opened her Sheffield garden to the public for the first time two years ago, she had no idea how many visitors would arrive.
In the event, more 140 people from across South Yorkshire turned up at Dover Road, off Ecclesall Road, for an event that raised £580 for Cancer Relief.
On Sunday, Marian opens her garden for the second time and is hoping for £1,000.
She expects some people to come back for a second helping. “People were incredibly kind about the garden, telling me how much they enjoyed the visit.
“I had a few letters afterwards saying it was the best small to medium garden they’d seen. Two people even said they preferred it to the Chelsea Flower Show!”
The garden, which Marian has now worked on for 20 years, includes hundreds of plants, and many unusual ones, but all, says Marian, well suited to local conditions.
The style, she admits, owes something to her personality: “relaxed, colourful, organised chaos with a little opera thrown in!”
This time there is a whole new area of the garden, with more unusual plants and combinations, and an expanded alpine area, as well as the long-standing shrubs, borders and exotic flowers.
There will be plants to take home, some traditional and some unusual, priced from £1 to £5. Advice from the green-fingered lady herself is free.
“One of the nicest things last time was watching people talk to each other about different features of the garden,” added Marian, who was a bereavement counsellor at the Northern General Hospital and still works for the bereavement charity Cruse.
“I think a few people made new friends and even started some plant-swapping networks.”
The garden is at 34 Dover Road, S11 8RH and will be open on Sunday from 10.30am to 5.30pm. Admission is £2.50, with all money going to Cancer Relief.