My All-Time Favorite Garden….

Tomorrow a book about my all-time favorite garden will be available in the U.S.  It is called  “Nicole de Vésian: Gardens, Modern Design in Provence”.

I’ve never been there, having only visited it through photographs in books and magazines, which I keep in a special folder, ready for me whenever I need a visit.

The garden in called La Louve, which means She Wolf, and it was created by a woman by the name of Nicole de Vésian.  Nicole was a leading post-war French stylist, fashion designer and publicist.  Friend of Gertrude Stein, Alice B Toklas and Picasso, she was a designer for the Hermès in the 1950s and 1960s, working alongside a young designer named Christian Lacroix. After the death of her husband when she was 70, she moved away from Paris, to Provence, where she bought a house in Bonnieux. Located in the Luberon,  de Vésian’s dilapidated estate was transformed into an amazing and influential garden.

Nicole sold her estate shortly before she passed away, but you can visit the garden, by appointment, once a month (closed in July and August) for an hour, in groups of at least 10 people (so you can see why I never got to see it!).

On the other hand, if you’re interested in buying the property, the estate is being handled by French realtors Emile Garcin, and the property is listed as being in the “2,300,000€ to 5,000,000€” category. (For Americans, this is between $3.3 million and $7.2 million.)  Or you can buy the book on Amazon. The photos in this book are the best pictures of La Louve that I have ever seen, and were taken by a British photographer by the name of Clive Nichols.

Here are some of his photos.

Nicole de Vesian...wasn't she beautiful? She looked like her garden, and her garden looked like her.

And now you are probably wondering why I don’t have a garden that looks like hers….good question! But I have plans!


11 thoughts on “My All-Time Favorite Garden….

  1. This is one of my fantasy gardens where I could drift around looking elegant and direct my team of gardeners or sit with my aperitif on warm fragrant evenings. Alas it will remain a beautiful dream as it fits neither my charcater nor my bank balance.

  2. Susan, I have seen photos of this garden in the past, but I did not realize that she started it at 70!!!! Love, love it. I shall have to order the book, and I can bring it back to Barbados and drool (and sweat) over it all summer. I love this type of garden, exactly what I would love one day, why I called my blog Green Theatre.
    I also have a folder, actually a filing cabinet with gardens and designers that I follow, David Hicks, Paul Bangay, Roy Strong, way too many to list!

    • So are you living/working/on vacation in Barbados? It looks so beautiful.
      About the folders, tell me about it! If there was ever a fire, I would be torn between my family photos and my 4 ft. stack of folders!

      • My husband got transferred here 18 months ago for a 3 year contract. Very hard to leave my house and garden behind, but it is such a beautiful country to live in and can’t garden in the winter anyway. But I am limited as to how much time I can spend in Canada due to tax regulations, so I break it up into spring and fall visits.
        I would grab my folders, I could get copies of most of my photos from other family members.

  3. A wonderful example of a tidy, sheared garden. Aside from the countless hours of labor required to maintain such a lovely sight, a garden such as this might entice even the non-gardener to visit their local garden center and give the lifestyle a try.

  4. What a genius-glorious beyond words-it may seem simple to create a garden like this, but Oh! just try it-it will defeat you before you even start
    Thumbs up for Nicole, her spirit lives in that garden for all to experience

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