NL Doet – Frankendael orchards

Friday March 10th, between 17.00 and 18.30, we will be working in the Frankendael orchards,  as part of NL Doet 2017. The event is sponsored by Oranjefonds and will enable us to increase the biodiversity of these quiet gardens by adding more edible and medicinal perennial herbs.

Hornbeam and parterre garden frankendael orchards

We’ve been adding plants to these gardens over the past two years.  It’s always a lovely green space but we really need more flowers to be available for pollinators.

On Friday March 10th, there will be organic herb plants to dig in to the gardens and seeds to sow. It would be great if you can join us!

If you would like to come along, either send us an email or register via the NLdoet website.

Photo credit - Peter Elenbaas

Photo credit – Peter Elenbaas

Everyone is welcome and no experience is needed! This is a place to meet other gardeners, listen to bird song and enjoy lush green space in the city.

We are looking forward to welcoming some new faces to this relaxed community garden in Park Frankendael.

Photo credit - Ioana cristina musat

Photo credit – Ioana cristina musat

The RoH orchard gardens were put into our care in April 2014. They are hidden behind Huize Frankendael, are owned by gemeente Amsterdam and are open day and night, everyday.  The RoH orchards team meets there on Wednesday mornings, all year round. Sometimes there is a lot of green work to be done,  other times in the cold and dark we simply check on the gardens before having a drink and chat.

Dorette orchard flowers

During the late spring and summer 2017 we would like to restart a regular weekend gardening session. If you fancy joining that, please let us know!




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Posted in Orchards

Darwinplantsoen in community hands


This morning several River of Herbs volunteers visited the vasteplanten tuin at Darwinplantsoen in Amsterdam Oost.

The garden is presently closed for the winter but we arranged a special visit and we certainly had a special time there!

This beautiful garden,  filled with over 200 types of meticulously maintained flowering perennials,  is currently managed by the local council but soon that situation will end. The dedicated long serving gardener will retire and the council will relinquish its care of the garden. Thankfully, local residents have arranged to take over management of the garden. They promptly formed a stichting (charity), drew up a sound action plan and the council agreed to their ideas.  So, Darwinplantsoen will move into the hands of the local community in a few months time.

From May 2017, there will be many opportunities for locals to get involved with this gorgeous place; They can volunteer as gardeners,  become a supporting member,  attend public workshops, volunteer in other roles and a whole host of community centred green projects will be happening there.

Today,  the RoH volunteers considered how the garden can be made more sustainable whilst retaining is unique and historic character. We have a lot of ideas and can’t wait until May when we can get involved. But we will wait!

If you would like to get involved please make contact with the Vrienden van park Darwin or leave a comment here and we’ll pass on your interest to them. The garden is enormous, full of nectar rich flowers in summer, seedheads in winter in summer and it needs a lot of love year round. Even so it is a very manageable garden. Dozens of enthusiastic volunteers will be needed to make this the success that it deserves to be: A garden run by the community for the community and nature.

Thank you to the Vrienden van park Darwin for allowing us access this morning. We look forward to gardening with you very soon!

Posted in Herb Gardens

Darwin plantsoen

​Update: Yes! The orchard group can visit Darwinplantsoen on Wednesday 1st February at 10.00. We won’t be gardening but we will be looking and brainstorming. 

Next Wednesday – 1st Feb already!  – the River of Herbs orchard group plans to visit Darwinplantsoen for a bit of a change. We would like to see how things are developing there and consider how we can offer assistance.

The herb gardens of Darwinplantsoen are found on your right whilst walking or cycling from Amstel station to Park Frankendael (along the Hugo de Vrieslaan). Head towards the dark green Yew hedges and look for the gated entrance facing the row of houses.

Please check here or with me (0627596930) before Wednesday to avoid disappointment. The gates looked very closed today and the sign says closed till April but I know they are opening more often than before.  I’ll check the situation on Monday and confirm then! Photo is of the entrance we will use – if it’s open.

I hope to see you on Wednesday!
​Update: Yes! The orchard group can visit Darwinplantsoen on Wednesday 1st February at 10.00. We won’t be gardening but we will be looking and brainstorming. 
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Posted in Herb Gardens