Roses Everywhere

June 26, 2012

Just an idea of the profusion of roses blooming in June at Giverny!

For a few weeks, Monet’s garden becomes a rose garden.

Rambling, climbing roses climb on dozens of metallic structures, typical for a garden designed in the 19th Century.

Pretty Pink Poppies

June 7, 2012

After the yellow and orange Iceland poppies, and the enormous red perennial Chinese poppies, it is now time for the lovely pink annual poppies.

Each year, when they pull the dried ones out of the ground, the gardeners scatter the seeds in the flower beds. They grow everywhere, and they turn the garden into a pink fairy for a few days.

The eremurus, also known as fox tails, create an interesting contrast with their vertical shape.

They are topped by the climbing roses, at their best in June.

Translucent Flowers

April 30, 2012

purple-tulipsTulips spread their colors these weeks at Giverny. It is one of the times of year when the monet garden is at its brightest. The big colorful heads stand side by side, being planted tight, undisturbed by any leaves, that are much lower.

Tulips have the ability of looking thick and massive in direct or mute light, and totally different as soon as the sun shines through their petals. Then, in late afternoon for instance, they become delicate and light, they seem to loose any weight and dance in the breeze.

Giverny Photo Gallery

April 21, 2012

giverny-monet-pondI have eventually gathered my favorite pictures of Giverny into a photo gallery.
Season after season, Monet’s water garden and flower garden change a lot.
I like early morning atmospheres as well as rainy days, bright sunshine or sunset. I like the snow white garden. I like roses and nympheas. I like the colors of autumn, the stunning reflections on the pond.
I hope you will like them too.

If you’d like painting after my pictures, please feel free. I would be happy to see your work.

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.

Painting Giverny

January 15, 2012

painting-givernyIt is many painters’ dream to be able to stay in Monet’s garden to paint.
If your medium is watercolor, pencils, ink… no problem. Just sit down on a bench (preferably) and paint. But if you use acrylic, for instance, and need an easel therefore, you must ask for allowance. Please get in touch with Fondation Monet. If there aren’t too many requests for the day you wish, you will be granted the privilege of staying in the gardens after closing time. This is the best way to feel just like Monet, almost alone on the grounds. Same vibrations, same inspiration. Have a great time!

Misty Morning on Monet’s Pond

October 17, 2011

giverny-boatsThe misty days of October are back! On Monet’s pond at Giverny, they create a soft atmosphere enhancing the different textures of the foliages. Among all these greens, the sumac of Virginia flames. Asters fill in the flower beds in big bouquets. The boat awaits the gardener. He will soon arrive to maintain the pond.

Through the Window

September 29, 2011

A look through the window of Monet’s studio, on the ground floor of his house at Giverny.

The garden appears like an additional painting among the canvases hanging on the wall.

Sensitive Water Lilies

July 3, 2011

white-nympheaWater lilies are sensitive to cold. When the night is overcast and mild, they are all open in the morning. But if the night is clear, they close and need several hours of sunshine to open again.

They like a warm water not only to open, but also to bloom. On Monet’s pond, water lilies are gorgeous during heat waves, they become scarce during rainy and cool periods.

This is true for a big pond like Giverny. For gardeners who would like to grow water lilies in a wash basin, it is wise to look for a partly shaded spot. In direct sunshine, the water of a small container becomes very warm. If some like it hot, it is not the case of water lilies.

Standard Roses

June 13, 2011

Standard roses are one of the beauties of Giverny.

As tall as trees, they measure over 2 meters and they offer their pink blossom like enormous bouquets.

Rose trees are generally not strong enough to resist wind, so they are grown on metallic structures that look like umbrellas or mushrooms, according to your imagination. Some people call them weeping roses, that’s really too sad.

In Monet’s flower garden, they tower over big bunches of peonies and large flower beds of pink and red poppies.

Pink Blossom at Giverny

April 15, 2011

In the 19th Century, trees used to be white in Spring. There were white blossoms of cherry trees, white plum trees, white pear trees… Apple trees were slightly tinted with pink when budding, but became white when in bloom. Only southern trees like peach or apricot trees could be pink, however they were rarely to be seen in Normandy.

So we can imagine the novelty of introducing exotic varieties like crab apples, Japanese cherry or plum trees in a little village on the countryside like Giverny. Their pink blossom must have looked unique to Monet, and to his neighbours.

The pink exotic trees are widely spread by now, but in April their short beauty still enchants Spring in Claude Monet’s gardens.

The ‘Tulip Fields’ of Giverny

March 12, 2011

tulip-givernyIf you are planning a visit to Monet’s garden in Giverny, you may wonder what is the best time of year to come. There are many! The scenery, the flower show change with the seasons. One of my favorite time is the tulip’s.
Tulips flower mostly during the second half of April. Their blooming is spectacular, gorgeous, breathtaking. They offer colors, colors, colors, always bright ones, they can have soft and tender or very warm flaming tones. They exist in an infinite variety of forms and aspects. And they provide amazing mass effects.
This border, for instance, was designed by Monet after visiting and painting the tulip fields in Holland. He was impressed by the large colorful stripes of these cultures.
When he came back to Giverny, Monet decided he wanted a very long border in his garden, from top to bottom, planted according to a monochromatic scheme.
This oversized flower bed records to his visual experience in Holland, as far as color and size are concerned. But Monet could not be satisfied with one sort of tulips only. His ‘tulip field’ is a very refined mixed border composed of many different sorts of tulips. They harmonize, their pink is slightly different, producing the subtle variation of tones that one can observe on an impressionist painting. A beautiful example of the way Monet used flowers like brushstrokes.

A Place for Love

February 19, 2011

On April 1st, when it opens for the first time in the season, Giverny is like a sleeping beauty. Still a bit dreamy, it awakes gradually.

Lovers in their own dreams start walking around or sitting on the benches, enjoying the Spring sunshine.

Giverny is a nice place to celebrate love, love of a partner, of parents, relatives, and also love for gardens, nature, painting and simply beauty.

It was Valentine’s day this week: I dedicate this post to all lovers.

Ice Cold

February 1, 2011

Claude Monet ‘s pond at Giverny is almost completely frozen today, after a few cold days.

The last leaves of water lilies are petrified in the ice.

The garden looks asleep, while the gardeners are very busy. They maintain the bamboos that were bent by the snow, they remove the dry ones and take them away. It is a big job to carry away these 25 foot long sticks!

The gardeners have also chopped down the sick weeping willow to plant a new one, they cleansen the walkways, put the pansies in the flower beds…

The guardrails of the little curved bridge are missing. They are currently being repainted in the garage.

When I was in Monet’s garden this morning, I had the feeling of visiting a backstage, having a glimpse on a Giverny that nobody will see, the secret Giverny of wintertime.

Looking Forward to Spring

January 28, 2011

On April 1st, when Fondation Claude Monet opens again for a new season, it is early Spring.

On the hills of the Seine valley, the pastures are still grey, waiting for a new grass to grow.

But in Monet’s garden, the first flowers display their colors.

The weeping willows open their buds and swing their freshly born leaves over the pond.

On the river side, the small basket willows stretch their orange twigs.

These traditional trees are useful to prevent the banks from slipping into the river, and they are lovely too.

It is still Winter right now, but we are all looking forward to Spring.