By Colleen Vanderlinden, Planet Green
Every garden is amazing. From the smallest container to the most dramatic botanic garden (such as those listed here), gardens help us appreciate the natural beauty around us, amaze us with the diversity that exists in the plant world, and stand testament to the creativity of those whose art consists not of brushes and paints, but of flowers and plants.
Whether they stand as symbols of a leader’s greatness, as a wealthy man’s monument to his love of plants, or as a beautifully cataloged collection of a particular type of plant, the world would be a sad place without its botanic gardens. Here are five of the most dramatic, amazing gardens from around the world.
1. Musee du Quai Branly Vertical Garden, Paris
The streets in this area of Paris mimic the meandering curves of the Seine, and at the heart of it is the Quai Branly Museum. The building itself is a hodgepodge of shapes, but it is the administrative wing that really draws attention. The four-story building, with its gently curving facade, is covered from sidewalk to roof in plants.
Designed by botanist and landscape designer Patrick Blanc, the garden comprises 15,000 plants. With 170 species represented, the garden is an amazing spectacle of urban vertical gardening that celebrates biodiversity. Plants included in Blanc’s design include heuchera, ferns, ivy, grasses, sedges, mosses, liverwort and bergenia.
The patented system Blanc designed to support the garden (and others he’s designed) is constructed of heavy-duty felt attached to a strong plastic backing. The felt and plastic support plant roots and provide a medium for water and nutrients to reach the plants. The entire thing is supported by a metal frame that holds the plants off of the facade of the building to reduce the potential for damage from plant roots. A drip irrigation system at the top of the wall runs constantly, bathing the plant roots in moisture and nutrients.
Image: Lauren Manning / Creative Commons