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.
May 20, 2012
This is Monet’s pond at Giverny seen from the Japanese Bridge in May, when the wisterias are in bloom.
The water lily pads float like islands on the surface. No flowers yet.
Short before closing time, visitors are few. The late afternoon sunshine enlightens the trees on the eastern side of the pool. Silence falls on the garden. The scent of the flowers is in the air.
March 23, 2012
This 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.
February 5, 2012
March at Giverny is time for the last tasks before the gates open to visitors on April 1st. The last pruning, clipping, mowing, raking… before D-Day.
While the gardeners take advantage of the empty garden to put their ladders and wheel barrows in the middle of the alleys, the earliest flowers bloom for their own sake. Big bouquets of daffodils shine in the middle of the fresh green lawns.
The first flowers of Spring are mostly yellow. They are paired with blue pansies to obtain this color combination that Monet liked so much, and that looks very attractive.
January 23, 2012
A quiet path, early in the morning in Claude Monet’s water garden at Giverny.
The big tree on the right is the trunk of a taxodium, a deciduous coniferous that loves river sides. The big leaves at its feet are petasites, also known as butterbur, a plant that grows wild along the streams in the surroundings of Giverny.
An orange azalea tops a bed of pink tulips and pink forget-me-nots.
This picture was taken last Spring, the 4th of May.
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.
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.
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.
June 3, 2010
Monet’s garden at Giverny is so beautiful at the turn of May and June that it has a taste of Paradise.
In this season, spectacular flowers like irises, paeonies, wallflowers and roses bloom all at the same time.
The small walks of the garden disappear, leaving the illusion of a divine meadow adornated by the most exquisite flowers.
Not to speak about the delicate scent floating in the air…
April 16, 2010
Spring at Giverny is like fireworks renewed every two weeks.
Daffodils and hyacinths burst out first, followed by tulips and alliums.
Bright colorful bulbs are everywhere, in the middle of the lawns, in squares, in rows, squattered in flowerbeds…
The gardens of Claude Monet opened two weeks ago, on April 1st. During the winter, benches and fences have been freshly repainted in green, and the spring garden looks repainted too, with the fresh greens of leaves and of grass.
Japanese cherries and crab apple offer their blossoms to the breeze, creating delicate flakes of pink snow.
The air is full of delicious scents and birds songs, and the sun is higher every day.
March 2, 2009
This is how the garden of the Museum of Impressionisms Giverny looks like in April.
Small chambers of monochromatic beds are hidden behind tall hedges. Each one has a different atmosphere, creating a surprising effect for visitors who stroll along the central alley.
Tulips are a must in spring, of course. But they need to be planted together with smaller flowers at their feet for a greater impact.
Several varieties are suitable to cover the bare ground. Pansies exist in so many colors that it is possible to create infinite harmonies.
Daisies are also a simple solution. Their pink gives a fresh look to the flower bed.
But if you are as lazy as I am, you will certainly prefer forget-me-nots. They reseed on their own and offer a very tender and poetic cloud of tiny flowers for weeks.
They are generally blue, but can also be found in pink or white. In Monet’s garden they are widely used: blue forget-me-nots with pink tulips, white ones with white tulips or pink with pink tulips for a ton sur ton harmony.
Here in the Museum’s garden they are planted in a wave towered by a bunch of tulips: this way they give rhythm to the border.
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.
May 14, 2008
The wisteria is at its peak over the Japanese Bridge in Claude Monet’s garden.
Its flowers look like long grapes. They are a soft tone of lavender and produce a delicious scent which recalls to the scent of jasmine.
It is an incredible feeling to stand on the bridge and be surrounded by the blooming wisteria all around you.
The beautiful effect doesn’t last very long, but Monet had thought of a special jocker. A second later wisteria will follow the lavender one when it is over. The second one is a white wisteria.