Welcome to our blog about our trip to France.

Les Jardins de Villandry

Les Jardins de Villandry

To a gardener, the Chateau de Villandry in the Loire Valley is Mecca.


The château itself is pretty unremarkable by Loire Valley standards. We elected to skip it and go directly to the gardens. I would say about 50% of the other visitors did the same.


Always the early birds, we arrived just after opening and followed the route through the gardens recommended by the pamphlet. The garden is divided into “rooms” and if you miss an entrance or a particular path, you can get turned around.

In the foreground, you can see a terrace that is the roof of the Orangerie. The huge white planters are made by the same company as those used at Versailles.


It was nice to get there before the place was swarming with people.


This garden near the top of the property provides a nice contrast to the elaborate hedging of the gardens below.


The “Sun Garden” in the farthest corner is much less formal and more of an English country style.

All of these plants thrive in full sun and would do well in my Napa garden. I’m taking notes!


i caught Mark talking to a frog.


Looks like they are starting a grape arbor. We could do this in Napa for sure!


This purple and silver herb border would work well in my sunny side yard.


The topiary might be a bit much for my little garden.


My dream vegetable garden!


The “potager” or veg garden is divided into 9 plots. Each plot has its own geometric design and is planted with a different mix of vegetables and flowers.


The selection changes from year to year. The roses and pear trees in each block are laid out in a perfect grid and help to complete symmetry.


With all these garden visits we’re been doing, don’t be surprised if Broadmoor Manor starts to look a little more like a Le Château de Napa!

Cointreau Distillery

Cointreau Distillery

Le Saut aux Loups Mushroom Farm

Le Saut aux Loups Mushroom Farm