Le Jardin Plume

– Posted in: Miscellaneous

I really should save this post for a week or two, but I just can’t resist sharing this gem right now. Those of you who were lucky enough to see the August 2008 issue of Gardens Illustrated were treated to a story about a stunning French garden called La Jardin Plume. This morning, I was searching for more information about it and found a link to the garden’s web site. Wow. That’s what I want my garden to look like when it grows up.

The site is mostly in French, but no matter: It’s easy enough to figure out how to navigate the site, and you can pick the botanical names out of the text. What you’re going for is the images, anyway: simply amazing. Check them out: La Jardin Plume. And oh my gosh, there’s a book about the garden as well, by the photographers: Joelle and Gilles Le Scanff-Mayer. It too is only in French, but you can see a few more photos on its Amazon.fr page. Enjoy!

Nancy J. Ondra
Nan gardens on 4 acres in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. In the firm belief that every garden ought to have a pretentious-sounding (or at least pretentious-looking) name, she refers to her home grounds as "Hayefield." There, she experiments with a wide variety of plants and planting styles, from cottage gardens and color-based borders to managed meadows, naturalistic plantings, and veggies--all under the watchful eyes of her two pet alpacas, Daniel and Duncan.
Nancy J. Ondra

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Frances November 30, 2008, 11:49 am

Oh ho, a post about this fantastic site. You don’t need to know any french to look at those lovely photos. They are the stuff of dreams. Thanks, Nan.


See what I was doing this morning when I was supposed to be working? I’ll have to put off seed ordering for another day. But it was worth it!

Cameron (Defining Your Home Garden) November 30, 2008, 11:52 am

I love Gardens Illustrated! Le Jardin Plume is beautiful (understatement, right?).

We were in the South of France in May, but Le Jardin Plume is up in Seine Maritime area near Rouen, so I’ve not seen it.

My husband and I are always browsing French real estate listings for entertainment. BTW, the well-marked hiking trails throughout France are just incredible.

I didn’t take the time to go into great details, but here is the link to my blog about that trip. We visited Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild on Saint- Jean-Cap-Ferrat. Most of those gardens are formal, but they do have a few casual and xeric gardens as well.



Understatement indeed, Cameron! I hope you get there in person someday. Thanks for sharing what you did get to see!

Gail November 30, 2008, 12:07 pm

Stunning garden! How many times can one person exclaim wow when looking at a garden! It is a gem, but not in the rough, this is an elegantly cut stone with brilliance and sparkle. Fran, thank you for posting this…today I have the time to visit their website! Gail

I’m so glad you enjoyed it as much as I did, Gail. When I saw the article photos, I wondered how the garden looked in other seasons. I was so thrilled that the web site provided the answer. The winter photos alone are breathtaking, and the fall ones are to die for! And, in keeping with this month’s Design Workshop topic, they even have a potager.

Mr. McGregor's Daughter November 30, 2008, 1:57 pm

Oh, that is stunning! Thanks for that link. I must get some Miscanthus. I haven’t been able to find the August issue at my library. I think somebody snagged it.

I wouldn’t be at all surprised if someone decided they simply *had* to keep that issue! Well, all of them, really. The newer one with the Piet Oudolf garden is just as drool-inducing.

James Golden November 30, 2008, 5:28 pm

Wow! Thanks for the heads up.

Good to know you enjoyed the photos too, James.

Craig at Ellis Hollow November 30, 2008, 7:08 pm

I’m with you Nan about it being the garden I want when it grows up. But I have no delusions that I’ll ever have that kind of control.

But that last series of images (‘plume’ link at the bottom) — I’m thinking I can do that (in my usual sloppy way, at least). Grasses? Check. Sanguisorba tenufolia. Will have to plant more of the seed I collected. Verbena hastata? It’s a freakin’ weed here.

Thanks for passing along the inspiration.

You’re welcome, Craig. See if you can get your hands on a copy of the August Gardens Illustrated. The pictures of that part of the garden will make you melt into a puddle of goo. Definitely good for inspiration. But I think I’m almost more entranced by the simplicity of the angular paths and square beds of their orchard area. I’m trying to figure out how I can do something like that with part of my own meadow.

Katie November 30, 2008, 7:38 pm

Thank you for sharing the link to such an amazing garden! My husband took French in high school and helped me navigate around the site.

You nailed it – this is what I want my garden to look like when I grow up too!

Hey, aren’t you lucky to have an in-house translator? Those images don’t even need words to be enjoyed, though.

Shady Gardener December 1, 2008, 12:52 am

Nan, Thank you for the link to the beautiful garden photos!! Wow! I loved the photo, in the Springtime gardens, that showcased Spider Webs! 🙂

By the way, I started a little meme to pass the Winter months, entitled “2008 Summer Inspirations.” December’s post has to do with giving credit to landscape/hardscape inspirations. Gardening Gone Wild provided more inspiration than I could handle… and tomorrow’s post is linked to this website in appreciation of your Garden Bloggers’ Design Workshop meme! 🙂 Hope you can make it over to see.

Yes, yes, Shady – that was one of my most favorite images too! And gosh, thanks for the kind words about the Design Workshop. We’re glad it’s serving its intended purpose.

lisa at Greenbow December 1, 2008, 7:53 am

I can’t wait to see the part of your meadow that you turn into something like this Nan. Like others said just too beautiful, a load of inspiration and dreamy.

Oh yeah, I’ve got plans. Big plans. I can’t wait for spring to get started!

Shady Gardener December 1, 2008, 11:14 pm

Nan, I didn’t know you were still posting Design Workshops….

Sure am, Shady – new topic on the first of every month, and the wrap-up on the last day.

Frances December 4, 2008, 4:47 pm

Hi again, Nan. I just wanted to blame you for me subscribing to Gardens Illustrated. I had never even heard of it before, but if you love it, it must be great. Not cheap either. I am waiting to see what the cost is in US dollars on my card! 🙂 Really, though, keep it up. You have given me more ideas than I can shake a stick at!

Oh, my, Frances. I can’t afford a subscription for myself; I sometimes get to see the newer issues at work, and a dear friend passes older copies to me as she finished with them. But I’m sure you won’t regret a penny (or a pound). (Or 60 pounds.)

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