These Exclusive Secret London Gardens Are Only Open This Weekend

by Karly Rayner

If the spectacle of Chelsea Flower Show has left your green fingers twitching for more, there’s a rare opportunity to peek at gardens which are usually off limits in London this weekend. 

London Open Gardens 2024 gives you the chance to get a rare glimpse at hundreds of secret garden’s all around the city. Below is The Shirt Company’s roundup of all of the best exclusive green places to swan around, with some outfit pairings for good measure. 

1. Mona’s Garden, Islington 

Voted ‘Best Back Garden’ by the London Gardens Society, Mona’s Garden houses an abundance of rare Mediterranean and Australasian plants. 

This magical space is designed for mindfulness and is a love letter to Mona’s favourite plant genus, Corokia which boast foliage in an array of wonderful hues, from olive green to icey silver. 

We think our Veronica Khaki button down shirt dress would be the perfect compliment to the 50 shades of green. 

2. Core Landscapes Community Gardens, Homerton 

Core Landcapes transforms neglected urban wasteland into verdant community gardens to promote better health in the community. 

Now boasting a roof garden, a meadow and orchard area and a community garden, Core Landscapes is a fascinating, enriching community enterprise which aims to to increase biodiversity and bring colour, scent and food-growing to Homerton. 

While you probably won’t be able to pick a tomato, there’s something irresistible about our Luli white cotton midi-dress perusing produce in the allotment. 

3. Mecklenburgh Square Garden, Bloomsbury

Mecklenburgh Square Garden is a private garden for key holders which is only open to the public this weekend. The garden was laid out between 1809 and 1810 and was once piqued the imagination of poet laureate John Masefiled, D H Lawrence and Virgina Woolf, who were all residents of the square at points. 

Mecklenburgh Square is crammed with fine mature ornamental trees, formal lawns and gravel paths. There is also a New Zealand plant section with some rarities among it and a herb garden planted in association with the Wellcome trust. 

As for what to wear? This gentile setting is the perfect place for our Callie prairie floral shirt dress to come into full bloom. 

4. 25 Cannon Street Rooftop Garden, St Pauls 

Overlooking the iconic St Pauls Cathedral, 25 Cannon street is a new kid on the block which offers some spectacular photo opportunities among the raised beds. 

This contemporary urban space is an oasis in the heart of the city which forms part of the City’s biodiversity green corridor, which stretches from the Barbican gardens in the north to the river in the south. 

If there’s ever been a place to don a bold red summer dress and get some snaps, it’s here and our Christiane shirt dress with it’s elegant obi belt is just the ticket. Oh, and you can also bring dogs on leads! 

5. Charterhouse Courtyard Gardens, Barbican 

The Charterhouse Gardens comprise seven acres, including Charterhouse Square and six courtyard gardens within the Tudor walls of the Charterhouse site. 

Listed as a Site of Importance for Nature Conservation, the gardens here provide an important habitat for wildlife in a highly urban environment. Along with a pleasing set of formal gardens which make you feel like you’ve gone back in time, there are also some rewilded spaces with native hedges, wildflower meadows and a pond. 

The gardens provide the perfect habitat for our Augusta pure silk victoriana blouse with a floaty skirt or some coloured slacks.  


6. Royal College of Physicians’ Medicinal Garden, Regents Park 


With over 1000 medicinal plants, the Royal College of Physicians’ Medicinal Gardens are totally the one to book a guided tour for. Each plant is linked to folk remedies, a modern medicine or commemorates a great physician, so there are hundreds of interesting stories to hear in the grounds of this grade 1 listed space. 

7. West London Bowling Club, Ladbrook Grove

While it’s not quite a garden, it’s hard to resist the allure of a perfectly manicured lawn, especially such a huge, unexpected on in Ladbrook Grove. 

You can grab tea, coffee and cake here as well as having a go and bowling on the green or at Petanque on a purpose-built court. Surely, there aren’t many better occasions to don our sporty, striped Malibu shirt?

8. Eccleston Square Gardens, Victoria

Featuring arches of Wisteria and a whole array of spectacular plants, Eccleston Square Gardens is a real surprise in the heart of Westminster. 

Developed by famous London architect, Thomas Cubitt, in the 1830s, the garden was ravaged by the great storm in 1987, so most of the planting in this historical site was carried out by the distinguished plantsman Roger Phillips, who has lived on the square since the ‘80s. 

You’re welcome to picnic in this spot on London Open Gardens weekend, and we think our Rio cap sleeved midi dress is the perfect accompaniment to some strawberries on a picnic blanket. Dogs on leads allowed. 

9. Ismali Centre Rooftop Garden, South Kensington

The chahar-bagh (four-part garden) of the Ismali Centre Rooftop Garden has a serene fountain as a centerpiece and draws inspiration from the Qur’anic imagery of the Garden of Paradise. Combining granite and greenery with geometry, symbolism and the sound of flowing water, this peaceful space is a must see that truly transports you to another world. 


Cover image credit: Wikicommons 


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