Category Archives: Other gardens

A Fanciful Garden at the School of Applied Arts in Cordoba

The School of Applied Art in Cordoba, Spain, is perhaps best known for famed Spanish artist Angel Lopez Obrero. He was born in Cordoba, and after some time living in Barcelona he returned to his hometown and taught at the School of Applied Arts there. The school, housed in an old building in one of Cordoba’s historic neighborhoods,  also has some stunning stained glass. And of course, a lovely walled-in sculpture garden.

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Inner patio
Inner patio
Stained glass
Stained glass
Artwork on exhibit by the students
Artwork on exhibit by the students

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A formal French Garden on a Locronan Roundabout

Next in my series of posts on French landscaped roundabouts, is this very elegantly landscaped one in Locronan, Brittany. Round shaped boxwoods, bonsai shaped trees, topiaries and assorted evergreens give it year round beauty, while hydrangeas which have a long blooming season in Brittany) add some color.

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General view
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General view

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An Unusual French Roundabout with a Pacific Island Theme

Next in my series of posts on French landscaped roundabouts, is this very unusual island themed roundabout in Brittany. I never cease to be impressed not only by the amount of work involved, but the sheer ingenuity that goes into the design and landscaping of roundabouts in France.

Each section of this roundabout garden makes an individual vignette to be seen depending on the road entering the intersection: underwater scene with fish and coral, beach loungers, tikki roofs and hammock, or boats. And all of it lushly landscaped in a wide array of mixed perennials that thrive in the climate of the region.

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A Courtyard Garden for a Woodland Cottage

On the outskirts of a small fishing village in Brittany, France, bordered by some woods, the original stone cottage was expanded over the years into a U-shape construction around a pleasant courtyard garden in the front, edged with rough stone walls.

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Roundabout Gardens and Borders in Crozon, France

French towns and villages often try to outdo one another with their floral displays and borders throughout. One area where they particularly excel is the roundabouts.

Roundabouts are the French version of the intersection, and particularly where the road enter the town, will plant a lavish mini garden in the middle of the roundabout.  I wrote about one already that was done as a Japanese rock garden. At each end of the small town of Crozon is a roundabout: the first one is more tropical, the second is paired with a mixed border along the median for a lavish floral display.

Tropical Roundabout:

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Floral Roundabout and Border:

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Petanque Park by the Sea in France

If  you have ever travelled through a village France and noticed a group of people having a heated discussion looking at balls on a dirt patch, you have seen petanque. It is a very simple game where each player has three metal balls and tries to throw them as closely as possible to the small wooden one called the “cochonnet”. It is usually played in teams, and while the rules are simple, the unevenness of the terrain must be taken into account, and there is skill involved in trying to hit the opponents ball to get it out of the way for example.

This small petanque terrain in Brittany couldn’t want for a more idyllic location, right on the water and surrounded with a small park!

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Unusual Japanese Rock Garden Roundabout in France

I am endlessly surprised and often delighted at the thought and effort French towns put into landscaping their roundabout. I will be writing other posts on more of those roundabouts, some with tropical plantings, other with cottage garden good looks.  This is one is inspired by Japanese gardens.

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Le Faou: Extravagant Tropical Mixed Borders

Listed among France’s “Plus Beaux Villages de France” (most beautiful villages),  Le Faou in Brittany puts out a display of stunning plantings and borders of shrub roses, cannas, silk trees, and many other shrubs and perennials. The mixed borders have the feel of a tropical garden.

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Xeriscape Oceanfront Garden in Northern Brittany

This truly exceptional garden was created in the small village of Roscanvel, in Brittany, overlooking the ocean. It is terraced to accommodate a hilly lot and also affords some protection from the sea spray and wind, and of course winter storms that are commonplace in the region.

A variety of hardy and low maintenance shrubs and evergreens add visual interest with different shapes and foliage colors. A few flowering shrubs and perennials such as pink oleander or lambs ear add touches of color. The grey foliage of the lambs ear by the garden remains when they are finished blooming.

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Lambs ear and purple ice plant
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Amazing ocean view
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Hebe in bloom
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Mixed shrubs
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Various shapes add interest

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