My favoured form of planting is always loose, with few sharp edges, but I can also be a sucker for the odd bit of formality too. On the way back from two weeks in the Loire (blog from Chaumont imminent), we stopped off in Saint Martin de Boscherville, just west of Rouen in Normandy, unaware that there was a rather large and impressive Abbey in this quite small village. The beautifully designed and maintained garden was a joyous surprise and a serene spot to enjoy the soft, late rays of a warm summer afternoon. The simplicity and perfection of this sculptural square of hornbeams completely enchanted me. Oh, to have a spacious plot and have a go at recreating this organic marvel.
What first lured me to the gardens was the promise of a potager,
and I was delighted to find quite a number of beautifully planted flower and veg beds on entering the garden.
Even the scarecrows followed a somewhat religious theme.
From the hornbeam terrace, views of the Abbey and further across the Seine valley were breathtaking and I would definitely like to spend a few more days on our next visit to explore more of the Normandy gardens on offer. This time round we stayed a night in the very comfortable Le Brecy (with a delicious breakfast of croissants and home-made jams, honey and yoghurt). If you’re in the area, a couple of other gardens certainly worth a visit just east of Rouen are Les Jardins d’Angelique and Le Jardin Plume (to read the Jardin Plume Blog click here) .