Winter Garden

Winter view of the garden at Berchigranges, in AlsaceTone-on-tone color and icy reflectivity offer much to admire.

Snow and zero-degree weather make for a beautiful winter landscape. The clean white ground gleams equally in the sunlight and in the moonlight while icy branches give the dense woods a delicate, lacelike look. Winter gardens have an organic tone-on-tone beauty that we rarely celebrate but is evident in these photographs of the great French garden at Berchigranges, in the French province of Alsace. Because it is nestled in the Vosges mountains, the garden is covered by snow for nearly half the year.  A gazebo, adjacent to the stone bridge [top], offers a protected spot to rest and enjoy the view in almost any weather.

Winter view of the garden at Berchigranges, in AlsaceThe land is designed and maintained by a French couple, Thierry and Monique Dronet,  who open it to the public from April to October when visitors are also able to purchase plants cultivated on the property.

Winter view of the garden at Berchigranges, in AlsaceCurving walkways and stone walls lend an informality to what is, essentially, a cottage garden – at least in spirit if not in scale.

Winter view of the garden at Berchigranges, in AlsaceThe Chambre des Dames (lady’s room) section of the garden is defined by an octagonal hornbeam hedge. I am besotted by gardens with living walls — no less when they are coated with ice.

(Source: House & Garden)

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