© Bagnoles Orne Jardin Retire Fleur Nature Plante Arbre Remarquable Annie Blanchais 6

Discover Annie’s “Jardin Retiré”

A secluded garden that combines beauty and art de vivre

At the heart of the resort of Bagnoles de l’Orne there is a sumptuous English garden surrounded by ancient oaks. Awarded the designation of Jardin Remarquarble, Annie’s garden is a private garden that is beautifully laid out and open to the public. What a lovely surprise to discover this romantic location so close to the lake!

A romantic garden created by Annie Blanchais

We make the most of our weekend in Bagnoles de l’Orne and explore a surprising place right in the town centre that is camouflaged by ancient, tall trees. As you walk down the avenue that leads to the casino in Bagnoles it is hard to believe that such a beautiful garden is open to visitors.

Annie Blanchais opens the gates to her secret garden to us, a garden that she has created from scratch over the years. This intimate and refined space invites us into a hauntingly beautiful and charming world.  Here, ancient roses are combined with elegant clematis, while there, flowering shrubs underline the tall stems of a row of bamboo.

The shady to semi-shaded garden contains more than 750 varieties of perennials and 450 varieties of trees and shrubs. Here, you can spot blue and purple campanula, large white umbrellas of agapanthus and the graceful flowers of the astrantia.

A succession of different moods: from avenues to alcoves

When you arrive in this marvellous garden full of relaxing colours, you immediately feel its magic! We slowly make our way along the flower borders that lead us first to a “charming garden”, then a “boudoir garden” and on to an “English parterre”.

During our walk among the sixteen different areas of the Jardin Retiré we chance upon Annie, its wonderfully imaginative gardener and designer. She tells the story of her garden that she created twenty years ago when she was still a dance teacher. She had fallen under the spell of English gardens on a trip to Jersey. Self-taught, she works every day to create this romantic décor.

The ground here is the rock of the Armoricain Massif, so topsoil had to be brought in by hand. Little by little, the botanical garden was able to take shape in the middle of the ancient oaks. Some of these venerable mainstays of the landscape are as tall as 35 m!

A moment of contemplation

This wonderful space, which covers 2,500 m2, invites us to dream and take a moment for contemplation. The water garden, with its quiet pool, has a relaxing atmosphere that is reminiscent of Zen garden. This botanical garden dotted with alcoves and pergolas is a haven of peace and a joy to stroll around.

We enjoy a beautiful spring afternoon relaxing on a bench in the “garden of shadows and light”. Then we venture into the greenhouse that is elegantly situated at the bottom of the garden. Inside, a small shop presents a pretty selection of decorative garden objects as well as hosta plants with decorative foliage.

We leave two hours later, delighted to have discovered Le Jardin Retiré, an enchanting place straight out of a fairytale.

from

6 €

pro person

Guided tour with Annie Blanchais

 

To visit on your own : see the time table.

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