Category Archives: Cottage gardens

Suce sur Erdre: Two Gardens With Vine Covered Arbors

Both gardens in Suce sur Erdre, a small town in southern Brittany, France, are designed around a long alley with an arbor, leading from the gate to the house. Wisteria is only starting to cover the  first one towards the house, while the second is covered from one end to the other in grapevines. Both arbors are made of metal, treated to withstand the humidity and rain prevalent in  Brittany, particularly over the winter.

DSC09677 DSC09670 DSC09671 DSC09672 DSC09673 DSC09674 DSC09675 DSC09676

Note the crepe myrtles in full bloom framing the arbor towards the front gate, above, and the acanthus growing on the side of the arbor featured below.

DSC09679 DSC09680 DSC09681 DSC09682 DSC09683

 

 

Brittany Canals, Cottage Gardens at the Locks – Part 2

This post features more of the lovely cottage gardens dotting the canal at the locks in Brittany near Nantes.

The first garden has a lush display of roses, palms, dahlias and perennials, as a large trumpet vine (Bignonia) covers the pergola (in the last photo)

DSC09650

DSC09655 DSC09654 DSC09653 DSC09652 DSC09656

Next is an old fashioned garden mixing edibles such as the pumpkin patch with a cutting garden, and embellished with some perennials as well. Young apple trees are tutored and espaliered.

DSC09642

DSC09644

DSC09645

DSC09648 DSC09647  DSC09649 DSC09646

 

Brittany Canals, Cottage Gardens at the Locks – Part 1

While visitors may on occasion complain about the weather, the gardens of Brittany benefit from abundant rainfall and moderately high temperatures in the summer. The Brittany countryside is lush and green year round, and so are the gardens. I recently had the opportunity to spend a few days on a boat navigating the Canal of Nantes in Southern Brittany.

DSC09558

The canal is dotted with locks every couple of kilometers, and each lock has a lockmaster house, many of which display lush front gardens in a casual cottage style.

DSC09560

DSC09561

DSC09562

The next one mixes banana trees (musa basjoo probably) with perennial borders in shades of yellow and orange on one side (black eyed susans, marigolds), pinks and blues on the other.

The green circle on the sign indicates there is someone to assist you through the lock; a blue one would mean you can go through but it is self service, red indicates it is closed.

DSC09563

DSC09567

DSC09564

DSC09565

Another garden contrasts the blue shutters so typical of Brittany with lush mixed perennial borders.

DSC09572

DSC09568

DSC09569 DSC09570

DSC09571

The last one features a quirky bird sculpture in a mixed border next to red nasturtiums for a touch of whimsy.

DSC09575

DSC09576 DSC09581

DSC09580DSC09579 DSC09578

DSC09577