Explore Norfolk's secret gardens as many hidden gems will welcome visitors this year for a great cause. 

The National Garden Scheme (NGS) raises money for health and nursing charities through admissions and refreshments.

A record-breaking £155,000 was raised in Norfolk alone in 2023.  

More than 70 places in the county will open in 2024, ranging from small cottage gardens to large country estates, and most are not usually on show to the public. 

READ MORE: 7 huge concerts and festivals coming to Norfolk in 2024

Thetford & Brandon Times: Snowdrops at Horstead House Picture: Supplied by NGSSnowdrops at Horstead House Picture: Supplied by NGS (Image: Supplied by National Garden Scheme)

Spread over eight months, the visiting season begins in February with the ever-popular Snowdrop Festival.

This includes woodland walks at Lexham Hall, Bagthorpe Hall and Horstead House and a guided tour at Raveningham Hall with the owner Sir Nicholas Bacon.

March and April will see the spring bulbs beginning to bring a little colour to Gayton Hall, near King’s Lynn.

In May, marvel at amazing azaleas and riotous rhododendrons in some of the larger gardens involved in the scheme. 

Thetford & Brandon Times: Visit Erpingham House Farm as part of the NGS Picture: Supplied by NGSVisit Erpingham House Farm as part of the NGS Picture: Supplied by NGS (Image: NGS)

June is the busiest month and it will feature evening guided tours of the peony fields at Erpingham House Farm, near Aylsham.

In July, take a guided tour of the fascinating Walled Garden at Little Plumstead or admire an interesting group of gardens in Norwich.

READ MORE: Norfolk town's status as a food and drink hub grows with new additions

During August, the gardens will continue to flourish with a masterclass of grasses and late planting at Severals Grange in Wood Norton, a new opening for the NGS called Charnwood in Brundall and the quirky Fiddian’s Folly in North Barningham.  

Thetford & Brandon Times: Fiddian’s Folly in North Barningham Picture: Supplied by NGSFiddian’s Folly in North Barningham Picture: Supplied by NGS (Image: NGS)

In September, there is an exclusive evening opening at the Holkham Hall walled garden, plus the Vicarage House in Great Hockham will welcome visitors over two days.   

October brings autumnal colours, which you can enjoy at the extensive gardens in East Ruston.

Details can be found at ngs.org.uk and in the Norfolk booklet, which will be available from the end of January in garden centres, nurseries and horticultural outlets.