Sunday, September 8, 2013

Monet's Gardener

I know what I want to be when I grow up...
Head Gardener at Giverny, Monet's home in France!

But I doubt I would ever really get much work done...

So many paths to explore...

Vistas to paint and photograph...

James Priest is the "new" head gardener. (though he's been there 2 years now).
He held previous positions as gardener to Steve Jobs, and the Rothchild family's home in Chantilly.   Now here's the surprise...he's English!
So James, a student of the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew, is a direct successor to
Monet himself as the caretaker of this French national treasure.
The previous head gardener took over in the 1970's and stayed on for 35 years.
The famous green shutters are opened and closed daily...

James approaches the design of the garden much like a painter would;
adding and layering colors and textures one over the other.
Plants are replaced seasonally, so the result is a constantly changing "palette", if you will....
Isn't this Wisteria vine is stunning?

The yearly show of the famous Water Lilies is one he
and his small staff work especially hard on,
as rats apparently love to chew the bulbs.
A 'baby bulb nursery' is maintained, to assure a constant supply.

Painters arrive daily to stake out a prime painting location.
Tranquility seems the word to describe the grounds,
but how to preserve that with a half million visitors trooping through yearly?

Just because fall is on the way is no reason to abandon color in the garden.
Isn't this stunning? Of course, these trees stood long before James came along,
but still, he's responsible for the continued health and happiness of this 5 acre jewel.
It's a big job I would happily take on!

Bloomers Floral Design
122 South Front St.
Wilmington, NC 28401