Early Morning

September 14, 2014

Early in the morning, the low sunbeams stroke the flowers at Giverny. Some mist still hangs in the air, like the dreams of the night. There is a feeling of awakening.

The little lanes of Monet’s garden look even more inviting. Early in the morning, minutes after opening time, the Clos Normand is still silent. One can hear the plants breathing, almost.

It is a magical moment that must be picked up quickly. Shortly later, the air will be full of voices, and the place full of people.

Blue Flowers

September 6, 2013

According to Claude Monet’s step son Jean-Pierre Hoschedé, the painter loved blue flowers.

This beautiful solanum, a plant belonging to the family of tomatoes and potatoes, is covered with simple little blue flowers.

It matches the colors of the kitchen window with its blue squared curtains, a very typical french pattern called vichy fabric.

In late Summer, plants are at the top of their heigth. With a bit of imagination, the flowers of the Giverny garden look like big waves splashing against the walls of the house.

Impressionist Spring Colors

November 23, 2012

While Giverny is closed for the winter, the gardeners of Fondation Monet are busier than ever. They are getting Monet’s gardens ready for next spring. After pulling out the annuals and cutting the perennials down to ground, they prepare the soil and start the planting. Thousands of bulbs must be planted as soon as possible, preferably before frost.

The beds in front of Monet’s home obey the same color schemes every year. Enormous tulips in different shades of pink combine with blue forget-me-not. The trick is to choose a palette of tones ranging from apricot to mauve to obtain an illusion of brushstrokes. The effect lasts longer than expected because early and late blooming tulips are used together.  A row of dianthus surrounds the beds.

Next to these most impressive pink tulip beds, a border made with different kinds of yellow wallflowers  offers a strong contrast in terms of color, size and shape. This border located under the pink blossom of three crab apple trees is partly shaded. Mauve blue bells scattered among the wall flowers produce an effect of shade and sunshine. The border is lined by white daisies. Last spring the gardeners added white tulips, for a very fresh result.

Red Border

August 15, 2012

This flower bed graces the pond side in Monet’s water garden at Giverny. The main color is red, ranging from orange to purple. I’ve counted over 20 different kinds of flowers planted together, but there are probably more. Here are a few: New Guinea impatience, common begonia, angel wing begonia, common fuchsia, fuchsia microphylla, abutilon, asclepia, oxalys, sage, tithonia, heuchera, polygonum, sweet William, nicotinia… to quote only those that are flowering right now. This border is a good example of the way Monet liked to combine flowers. The appearant wildness of the garden is the result of a lot of work.

Giverny at Iris Time

May 24, 2012

The question of the ‘best time’ to come to see Monet’s gardens at Giverny is hard to answer. Many times are so beautiful!

The iris period is one of my favorite. The irises are just at their peak right now, displaying their charms in waves of white and purple petals in Monet’s flower garden.

I love the irises, but I love the spectacular tulips as well, the fresh blossoms of early spring, the poppies time, the roses, the gorgeous summer flowers including Nympheas and nasturtiums, the asters of autumn…

When is it the best time to see Monet’s gardens? There are so many, one visit is not enough, you must come back!

 

Monet’s Garden in Early April

March 23, 2012

giverny-aprilThis is what you can expect if you are visiting Giverny in Early April. The white and pink magnolias are in blossom. Very soon, their flowers will fall on the lawns, creating a white circle at the foot of the trees.
The pimples of weeping willows have burst, long branches of fresh green leaves hang over the pond, reflecting in endless verticals.
Patches of yellow or white daffodils illuminate the spring grass and diffuse a fabulous scent.
Monet’s pond, where only a few water lily pads announce the future splendour of Summer, is stiller than ever, and the atmosphere very peaceful.
All the benches and bridges have been repainted a bright green. They look inviting.
And birds sing like mads, offering the perfect voice track for a quiet and serene visit of Giverny.

Monet’s Color Garden

November 25, 2011

monet-color-gardenIn front of his second studio, a pink house he built in 1899 on the corner of his estate, Monet designed a colorful area of parallel flower beds.
In October, the tall flowers of late season mix their pinks, blues, yellows, oranges and reds and their different textures ans shapes, creating a living painting that moves in the breeze.
Sages, dahlias, asters, cosmos, roses, black eyed Susan, tithonias are all enchanting September and October.

Nasturtiums and Giant Flowers

September 27, 2011

The beauty of September in Monet’s garden at Giverny lies in the bright colors displayed by giant flowers.

Pink or red huge dahlias, tall yellow helianthus, enormous purple asters, supersized yellow or brown sunflowers have now reached their final height.

In the main alley, nasturtiums flow like a river on the sloping ground, pretending to fill the pond of the water garden.

Their petals shimmer in the sunshine, just like paint on an impressionist canvas.

Summer Light

September 13, 2010

Summer is coming to an end, offering a large display of flowers in Claude Monet’s gardens at Giverny.
The flower beds that looked organised in early season are now full of overgrown plants, sunflowers, dahlias, cosmos…
 Under the clematis, smaller borders catch the morning light dancing on the freshly watered gauras.

Scented Beauties

February 17, 2009

Aren’t you tired of winter? We all look forward to spring. In Monet’s garden sprouts of flowers are coming out, while the gardeners are busy planting the pansies.

This is the way they will look in early April. Hyacinths will be already in full bloom and full scent, their delicate perfume recognizable steps away. At Giverny they greet the visitors right at the entrance to the garden.

Their pink combines perfectly with the mauve pansies flowering at the same time. All together they make a bunch of spring.

Monet in his studio

January 28, 2009

This is a view of Claude Monet standing in his first studio amidst his favorite canvases. The light of the afternoon is almost palpable.

This room located in his main house at Giverny was turned into his sitting-room after 1890.

When Monet became successful, he built a new house in the corner of his garden, where he moved his studio. He had now a well lit large room to work in and to store his paintings. The former studio became a place where he used to have a liquor after lunch, where he would sit to read a gardening book or a novel by Maupassant. Monet also used to write many letters.

The paintings for sale where displayed in the second studio whereas he kept the ones he cherished too much to sell them in the first studio.

The picture was made in springtime according to the tulips behind Monet. The photo reveals how much the painter loved flowers. There were at least six vases in his studio on this day!