When you’re in France and anywhere near the Berry region, try and make time to visit this beautiful garden in the former Orsan Priory. This was my second visit and I admit to being rather obsessed by it.
Prieure Notre-Dame d’Orsan, originally established as a monastery in 1107, was made into a garden and the buildings converted into a small hotel by two architects Sonia Lesot and Patrice Taravella. It’s a lovely space with plenty of garden ideas.
The garden doesn’t rely on a varieties of colour or flowers for interest, rather on a strong lay-out.
It’s sub-divided by hedges into a series of rooms with glimpses through to other areas or long paths with views that spur you on to discover what’s ahead.
The Priory building itself makes a lovely back-drop, visible from different parts of the garden
The hedges are cut into interesting shapes, forming arches, curves and gate-posts.
It’s a very practical garden too, with a smart potager and lots fruit that’s used in the hotel.
There’s even a small area of wheat that’s used to make flour.
I do love seats in a garden, they encourage you to slow down and sit a while.
this one has a view through to a courtyard and this beautiful pink rose, Pierre de Rousard.
There’s an earlier post about the potager if you’d like some inspiration for growing vegetables.
Should you be tempted, here’s a link to the hotel.
all images: Jill Anderson