Knoll Gardens Foundation

Registered Charity Number: 1159390

Look, Learn and Share

Look, Learn and Share

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What we do

Created in 2008 the Knoll Gardens Foundation (KGF), is tasked with achieving a better understanding of the relationship between Knolls naturalistic style, the gardens wildlife and the wider environment.

Look, Learn and Share

We believe that ongoing observation of our garden, its plants and its associated wildlife gives us a better understanding of the principles and processes that create a healthy and biodiverse garden environment, which in turn allows us to share such useful and practical information with others.


A significant part of our current focus are the ongoing surveys, several of which are undertaken by our own volunteers, and include various groups of garden wildlife such as Butterflies, Dragonflies, Bees, Amphibians and Moths. The results of these surveys allow us to build at least a partial picture of what is living in or visiting our garden; and also to help us understand why that might be so.

Along with a desire to widen our survey groups (we are always pleased to hear from a relevant expert), the exciting possibility of eDNA surveys are currently under consideration.

A series of galleries are slowly being created up that detail by image the wildlife recorded during these surveys. The Butterfly gallery for example shows every butterfly that has ever been recorded at Knoll.


Our volunteer organisation is active in several areas including;

  • helping to care for and enhance the garden
  • undertaking regular surveys of specific wildlife groups
  • a coordination role for all the individual surveys
  • physical labelling of the plants in the garden
  • creating and maintaining a database of all living plants within the garden.
  • administration and website updating
  • assisting nursery staff with plant care

Engaging with the Community

Public engagement activities include involvement with local community gardens, our Foundation Friday programme, an annual Community Presentation and more recently a new project designed to implement a series of garden interpretation boards to explain the key messages of the garden and it naturalistic approach.


Community and School Gardens

Over the last few years the KGF has been engaged with a number of locally based community and school gardens where its knowledge and understanding of wildlife friendly low impact gardening, that is supported by Knoll Gardens recognised expertise and supply of plants, has been of some value to those projects. We are pleased to hear from locally based groups whose community based projects might benefit from our involvement.

Foundation Fridays

For some while the KGF has been providing local groups and clubs  with a chance to enjoy free access to the gardens on selected Fridays throughout the summer.

They have given many community groups the opportunity to be inspired by the gardens’ wildlife-friendly naturalistic plantings which offer an abundance of texture, pattern and form to be captured on both film and canvas, but also time to relax and unwind in Knoll’s very special oasis of natural beauty.

A range of groups including camera clubs, art societies and local charities, have taken part and shared photos and artwork, as well as personal reflections, from their day, having been inspired and moved by Knoll’s unique sense of place.

If you belong to a local club and would like to be included in the Foundation Friday programme please do get in touch with ju***@wh****************.uk

Community Presentation

Each year the KGF offers local organisations the opportunity to host one of Neil’s presentations free of charge. For the opportunity to host a sponsored Community Presentation all you need to do is complete the form (link to form) which will include providing up to 250 words explaining how your organisation would benefit from hosting this event. Please note you will need to provide a suitable venue (with large projector screen) for the talk, and market the event to ensure an interested audience who will really get the most out of Neil’s inspirational talk.

The subject of your lecture can be chosen from one of the three lecture topics outlined on the form, (normally costing £590 plus expenses) which will be presented completely free-of-charge.

This invitation is not restricted to horticultural groups – your group just needs to have an interest in horticulture, conservation or the environment. Any community organisation from within Devon, Dorset, Hampshire, Somerset or Wiltshire is welcome to apply.


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