The story of the garden began in 1897 when a Parisian businessman, Georges Delaselle, visited the island and was captivated by the exotic plants brought there by sailors. He decided to create his own exotic garden and in 1918 moved permanently to the island. As so often happens, on his death the gardens gradually fell into disrepair and were only rescued in 1987 with the formation of the Friends and the support of the Conservatoire du Littoral. Today there are more than 2,500 species in the garden, from five continents.
The South African Rockery is bright and cheerful as you step through the gate.
And just round the corner I found proteas!
While digging ditches Georges Delaselle uncovered a Bonze Age Necropolis. Today where cordyline trees stand among the dolmens and allee couvertes.
The Palm Grove has a huge variety of palm trees and ferns, as well as a pond hidden in the semi-gloom – a real joy for a photographer with time to spare.
When he arrived in 1897 there were no trees on the site and Georges Delaselle planted them as windbreaks. Now they tower upwards.
On a hill is a Calvary – I don’t know where this comes from, but it looks like the many 16C and 17C carvings I have seen all over Brittany. But why here?
The Cactus Garden has many plants which I recognise from South Africa… On a cactus which I remember as standing proudly in the veldt people have carved their initiials – what can one say…
The borders and the grass garden…
Looking out –
This is a fascinating garden and bear in mind I was visiting in September, it is clearly beautiful at most times of the year. Do visit!