They say gardens are the window into the soul of their sculptor. This worries me given there is just cement in my back yard. In these times of land scarcity, those with gardens are the ‘haves’ and those without are, well, they are everyone else. Luckily, public gardens are now fundamental in any town planning strategy, so we the people can enjoy terrific tulips and lovely lilies to our heart’s content. To celebrate Spring, we present the six most beautiful gardens in the world.
1.Claude Monet’s Garden, France
The quaint village of Giverny in northern France is a postcard. Monet’s garden is like his painting—messy but orderly, a tempest of bright colors in a teacup. The impressionist era painter famed for his notable works—Water Lilies and Poplars— drew inspiration in his last and most creative years by relaxing in his wonderful garden. Life reflecting art reflecting life.
“I perhaps owe having become a painter to flowers” Claude Monet
2. Longwood Gardens, USA
A horticulturist’s fantasy, Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania is the premier garden in the whole of the Americas. Here you will find 4,600 different plants and trees in the countless gardens both inside and outside blooming in over 1,000 acres. Their collection spans from Orchids to Chrysanthemums and everything else that flowers under the sun.
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3. Royal Botanic Gardens, England
Even the Queen would be happy to potter around in this the largest and most diverse collection of plants in the world. Since 1840, lucky Londoners have enjoyed the magnificent bouquets. The gardens have their own police force—the Kew Constabulary— protecting the rights of the flowers since 1847. Any unruly poppies are shown the door.
4. Butchart Gardens, Canada
The enchanting former home of Robert Butchart a cement pioneer in North America. He developed a quarry, built a cement plant and to balance things out he planted rose bushes and sweet peas for him and his wife Jennie the company’s chemist. The National Geographic called it one of the most beautiful gardens in the world in April last year. If you are lucky enough to open their guestbook you will read comments like the one left by—CL, Salem, OR “Too beautiful to describe!”
5. Nong Nooch Tropical Botanical Garden, Thailand.
Mr. Pisit started off with a fruit plantation of mangoes and oranges; a number of years later he had one of the most eclectic selections of botanicals in the world. Presently, over 5,000 people visit every day and the garden has a trophy cabinet filled with gold and silver. The concept of the garden is to be a garden for all people of this world.
6. Gardens of Versailles, France
Louis XIV liked nothing more than walking up and smelling the roses during the Great Century in France. Becoming King at the age of four is no easy task, but after the sudden death of his father King Louis XIII, he had no choice in the matter. This child was different than the others. He felt humiliated by the arrogance of the monarchy and the lords of the palace. Interestingly, Louis chose the sun as his personal emblem, Apollo—god of peace and the arts. You can feel this when you jaunt through the gardens. It was no mean feat to design and construct a place of this magnitude. Thousands of men were recruited—sometimes entire regiments to complete the awe-inspiring project.