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Open Gardens Registration Details and Tips

For a printable version of this Tip Sheet - CLICK HERE

Thank you for considering opening your garden with NPA. Following are registration details and tips to help you complete our open gardens registration process:

Membership:  To open your garden with NPA, you must be a current member when you open.

Choose Your Open Days:

    • Open on any day you’d like – year-round
    • Open on a summer weekend day selected by NPA for gardens in your area
    • Do both – open with nearby gardens on a date selected by NPA – and open another time too!
    • Set up your own garden tour date with your gardening neighbors

When choosing a day to open, consider the following:

    • Gardens that open with nearby gardens generally get more visitors – this is why we created a Summer Open Gardens Touring Calendar (see calendar below) that groups gardens by area (see maps below)
    • NPA’s touring calendar is based on dividing our region into 16 areas and assigning three days for each area to open – one in May, one in June or July, and one in August
    • May-August hosts are encouraged to open on a day selected by NPA for gardens in their area to increase their number of visitors
    • Hosts are welcome to open on any date they prefer – regardless of what area we suggest should open on that date
    • Hosts can open on any date throughout the year
    • Gardens accessed by ferry service or located further away from the Seattle Metro area are encouraged to open with nearby gardens to increase their number of visitors
    • Geographic boundaries for NPA’s 16 areas are approximate – gardens near borders could open with adjacent areas
    • NPA’s summer touring calendar is based on each area opening for one day (Saturday or Sunday) – hosts can open both weekend days but may get fewer visitors on the ‘off-tour day’
    • Off-season open gardens (January-April and October-December) will not be listed in the printed Open Gardens book mailed to NPA members – but will be advertised on NPA’s website and in our emailed newsletters

Find Your Garden's Location & Suggested Tour Dates:  Find your location on the maps below to learn what NPA Area your garden is in, then find the three dates on the Summer Touring Calendar we’ve assigned for your area to open. We hope you can open on one or more of these suggested dates!

Writing Your Garden Description:  You will be asked to provide two versions of your garden description – a short one (50 words max) and a longer one (250 words max). The short is in the printed Open Gardens book, and the longer one is in both the book and on a members-only website page.

Some garden hosts are hard-pressed when it comes to writing a garden description. Think of it as an overview of the experience that awaits the visitor. Here are some prompts to help you get started:

  • What kind of garden is it? Cottage, woodland, formal, English, etc.
  • How long have you gardened there?
  • Do you specialize in particular plants?
  • Does your garden have any special features? Water features, shed, arbors, art, etc.
  • What do you love most about your garden?

It’s best to refrain from giving a lengthy, itemized list of all the plants you grow. Let visitors discover them as they tour your garden.

Printed Open Gardens Book Deadline:  February 15th is the last day to submit your open gardens registration to be listed in the printed book mailed to NPA members in April. It takes many weeks to create, edit, publish, and mail NPA’s Open Gardens book – so we have to set a firm deadline. The printed book only lists gardens open from May 1st through September 30th.

Late Registrations:  If you miss the book deadline - you can still register to open your garden in May-September. It won’t be listed in the printed book but will be listed on an NPA members-only website page and in our emailed newsletters. So, if you see that gardens will be open in your area and want to add your garden, we can add it to the tour - if you register a minimum of 3 weeks before your open date.

Garden Photos:  Plan to upload up to 3 color photos (10 MB max each – or already reduced for web) that show off your garden or garden features. These will be published in the members-only area of the NPA website with your open garden details.

Two-Step Registration Process:  Once you decide to open your garden, our 2-step registration process is simple:

Step 1. Visit NPA’s website and click the ‘Register to Open Your Garden’ button on the Open Gardens page. Fill out this short first form with your name and email address (use the email address associated with your NPA account). Click CONFIRM, and you will immediately receive a Step 1 acknowledgment email from NPA.

Step 2. Next, open the acknowledgment email and click the link to open a second Registration Form, where you insert all the details about your open garden event. This form can be saved and edited as much as needed before you submit your final registration information. 

    Please register by February 25th to include your May-September open garden listing in our printed/mailed Open Gardens book.

    For tours not listed in the Open Gardens book, please register a minimum of 3 weeks before your open date to allow us time to process your registration, mail your host packet, and advertise your event.



    Below is NPA’s 2024 Summer Open Gardens Touring Calendar and NPA’s Area Maps that show our 16 designated garden regions.


    2024 Summer Open Gardens Touring Calendar:


    Notes:

    • See the three maps below to determine your garden’s designated area.
    • NPA’s Summer Open Gardens Touring Calendar will rotate weekends between areas yearly. This rotation allows all 16 regions to be open on different weekends the following summer.
    • NPA recommends that May-Aug hosts open their gardens on a date established for gardens to open in their area to receive more visitors; however, hosts are welcome to open on any date they prefer.


    NPA Area Map - NORTH

    Geographic boundaries are approximate – gardens near borders could open with adjacent areas.


    NPA Area Map - CENTRAL

    Geographic boundaries are approximate – gardens near borders could open with adjacent areas.


    NPA Area Map - SOUTH

    Geographic boundaries are approximate – gardens near borders could open with adjacent areas.



    For a printable version of this Tip Sheet - CLICK HERE  


    Contact NPA:   425-647-6004

    info@northwestperennialalliance.org

    Mailing Address:   PO Box 1034  Bellevue, WA  98009-1034

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