Open Gardens Australia

PO Box 940, Woodend   (03) 5424 8061
Overview

Open Gardens Australia is a not-for-profit organisation that opens private gardens and organises garden-themed events for public enjoyment around the country.

In Brief
  • Establishment Date: 1987
  • Organisation Type: Not-for-profit
In Detail

What is Open Gardens Australia?
Open Gardens Australia is a not-for-profit organisation that opens private gardens and organises garden-themed events for public enjoyment around the country.

Our aim is to promote the enjoyment, knowledge, and benefits of gardens and gardening in the Australian community, and to build strong public support for the development of gardens across the nation.

Established in 1987 as Victoria's Open Garden Scheme, our path to national expansion occurred over a period of two decades, with the final territory being added in 2000, when we truly became Australia's Open Garden Scheme.

In 2011 the organisation was renamed Open Gardens Australia, to better reflect the nature of our role as the premier national body opening private gardens to the public, rather than our operational framework (ie. Scheme).

How is Open Gardens Australia run?

There is a national Board of Directors, all of whom are volunteers. The President is Tamie Fraser, who has held that position since 1992.

The organisation works within the framework of a Strategic Plan and Board Charter.
Strategic Plan
Board Charter

Open Gardens Australia has nine regions (one in each state and three in NSW) each with a management committee and a panel of selectors. Directors, committee members and selectors are volunteers.

The key to the organisations success is the huge number of volunteers involved.

As well as the Board, committees and selection panels, there are thousands of friends and relatives who help the garden owners on their open days by manning the gates, providing refreshments, etc. In all there are around 10,000 volunteers involved in some way each season.

To oversee the national operation of Open Gardens Australia, we employ a Chief Executive Officer and a Financial Administrator. Each region also has a part-time Regional Liasion Officer and Coordinator who are responsible for administering the region and for supporting the garden owners.

Our national expansion, which began in 1991, was greatly assisted by a grant of $150,000 from the Australian Horticultural Corporation with funds raised via the Nursery Industry Association pot levy.

ABC Radio has been a proud supporter of Open Gardens Australia since its inception in 1987. From local Saturday morning gardening talkback to 'Gardening Australia' on ABC television, the ABC supports and recognises gardening as one of Australia's most popular pastimes. Details of gardens opening as part of the program are also broadcast on ABC Radio around Australia.