Wednesday, 10 September 2008

The American Museum of Art Garden at Giverny

There are two beautiful gardens with public access in Giverny. One is the garden of the French Impressionist artist Claude Monet, which is always packed and entry costs €5.50 per person. The other is the garden of the American Museum of Art, a foundation which aims 'to promote a greater understanding and appreciation of America's rich artistic and cultural heritage for the benefit of a diverse audience', and is free.

It is the American Museum's garden which is situated directly across the street from the carpark in Giverny, and I wonder how many visitors don't do their homework and believe they have visited Monet's garden, without realising that it is a 500m walk further down the street? It nearly fooled me, but I was puzzled by not seeing any of the views I knew from photographs and paintings, so eventually I resorted to reading the directions on the noticeboard.

Opium poppies and asparagus.

A nice mixed beech hedge underplanted with stachys. I'm a big fan of mixed hedges à la Hidcote, but in general, the French haven't got the hang of them. In the Loire I frequently encounter garishly combined reddish photinia, bright yellow euonymus and dark green laurel, planted alternately to produce a tricolor hedge. Hmmm...

A lovely pale yellow scabious, beloved of butterflies on a sunny day (which, sadly, this wasn't).

But the self heating bumbles were out, visiting the safflower.

A weeping pear encroaches on some water iris planted in a formal pool.



  1. Your Lamia textor is Morimus asper. L. textor hasn't got so big antennas.

  2. Ando: Thanks ever so much. It's really good to have an accurate ID. I've checked M.asper, and you are clearly right.