Des-Kennedy-5.jpg
Credit: Des Kennedy

Meet Des Kennedy and his partner, Sandy, in their garden during the 20th annual Denman Island Home & Garden Tour

Des Kennedy's stunning home and garden will be featured at this year's Denman Island Home & Garden Tour

Have you ever fantasized about what it would be like to have your property featured in a home and garden tour?

Despite being "grizzled veterans" with 18 years of being featured in the highly acclaimed Denman Island Home & Garden Tour under their belts, renowned author and gardener Des Kennedy and his partner, Sandy, still find themselves in a frenzy of frantic preparations.

With the June 15/16 tour fast approaching, it’s a time of “manic activity, not unlike what’s involved in mounting an art exhibit or theatrical production,” says Des. “However much dithering and procrastination there may have been up until now, suddenly the mind is sharply focused by the fast-approaching deadline.”

Des Kennedy Garden

The Denman Tour is a rare chance to meet Des Kennedy in his own garden. Des is well-known as the wordsmith behind the exquisite Earthwords back-page column in GardenWise and BC Home & Garden for a decade and for his many popular books.

In his usual colourful manner, he describes the mad goings-on at their place:

“Half-finished projects are attacked with zeal. Everything scruffy and second-rate about the place is tidied up as best it can be. Wobbly cobbles are repositioned and desperate splashes of new paint are applied where most needed. And brilliant new installations are conceived.”

Despite the panic, when the tour arrives, he admits that he will adopt “an air of casual nonchalance. As though the windows are always that clean, the kitchen always that tidy, the perennial beds always that weed-free. Nothing unusual here at all. . .”

In fact, Des will be relaxing on his patio with Sandy, where he says they will be best positioned to meet and greet the visitors who will be meandering their way across the island to explore 12 exceptional homesteads.

“Tour-goers proceed at a leisurely pace from one unique home and garden to the next, for a cumulative experience of beauty. The homes – many of them owner-built – and the gardens surrounding them, are whimsically characteristic of island living.”

All proceeds go to the Denman Conservancy Association, a Registered Charity that, with the support of this Tour, has protected over 700 acres of Denman Island.

Des Kennedy

The 20th Annual Denman Island Home & Garden Tour

Renowned for its many unique and unusual homes as well as its many truly spectacular gardens, Denman abounds in amazing architecture, beautiful flower and bountiful vegetable gardens.

The 20th Denman Island Home & Garden Tour will start off at the Denman Island School garden, showing all the dedicated work done by staff, parents and students, as well as their vision for the future. DICES will be providing the lunch as a fundraiser for the garden and are aiming to grow all the veggies on site.

Tickets are available in advance from many outlets on Vancouver Island, from Nanaimo to Campbell River. Should you wish to purchase them on Denman, the Community Centre will offer ticket sales as well as maps and further details on featured homes. Or buy tickets online now.