Most Unusual Gardens and Where to Find Them
If you enjoy travelling and seeing new and fascinating landscapes, why not visit some of the world’s most extravagant and unusual gardens? In the UK, the average garden is 50ft. long with ten different kinds of flowers, a barbecue and a water feature — according to a report by Foxtons, an estate agent. Although this sounds great for the homeowner, it doesn’t pique our interest as a voyeur of remarkable outdoor spaces.
Fancy seeing some spectacular sceneries? Browse this list of the most unusual gardens in the world, put together by Arbordeck, a retailer of plastic decking.
The Gardens of the Palace of Versailles
If you want to experience grandeur and majesty, visit the gardens of King Louis XIV. Designed and renovated by André Le Nôtre in 1661, the monarch’s gardens surrounding the Palace of Versailles in France today offer some of the most striking landscapes in the world.
Le Nôtre toiled for four decades on these gardens alongside artists and architects — all under the watchful gaze of the monarch. The renovation was a mammoth task consisting of creating canals, shifting soil and transporting trees from various regions in the country at a time when the logistics and construction industries were obviously nowhere near as advanced as today.
Now, you can enjoy orange, lemon, oleander, pomegranate, and palm trees, as well as marble sculptures, beautiful parterres and peaceful waterfalls.
£1.5 billion — that’s the amount people in the UK spend on garden plants, according to the Horticultural Trades Association. At the Keukenhof Gardens in the Netherlands, you have 32 hectares of land scattered with seven million flowers — including 800 varieties of the iconic Dutch tulip in hues and shapes you’ve never seen anywhere else.
If you’re considering visiting, make sure you check up on the opening times — the Keukenhof Gardens, which were designed in 1857, are only open for two months every year. You’re treated to a blend of English and French horticultural designs filled with old beech trees and pretty ponds, and there’s also a petting zoo home to miniature pigs, giant rabbits and alpacas!
Gardens by the Bay
Gardens by the Bay is one of those destinations that you have to see to believe. A panoramic view of these gardens gives the impression of a grown-over city centuries from now, with huge towers, glassed domes, immaculate walkways, and immense water features surrounded by exotic trees and vivid plants.
Three stunning waterfront areas featuring more than one million plants make up this 250-acre Gardens by the Bay. During your visit, see Flower Dome — the largest glass greenhouse in the world — or head to Supertree Grove, which is a network of illuminated, tree-shaped vertical gardens. The Cloud Forest section is a great place to learn about rare flowers and endangered plants, and you can experience memorable views from the 22-metre high aerial walkway of the entire area.
Did you know that Gardens by the Bay has had more than 40 million visitors to date?
Bookworm Gardens is a fun, botanic environment located in the US state of Wisconsin — and everything is inspired by beloved childhood literature!
Merging the great outdoors with a love of reading, Bookworm Gardens opened in 2010 as a non-profit organisation. Today, you can visit quirky buildings and characters from books such as The Tale of Peter Rabbit. With turkeys, owls, chipmunks and butterflies calling Bookworm Gardens home, it’s no surprise that the venue is a top place for families and schools.
Garden of Cosmic Speculation
The Garden of Cosmic Speculation is a destination you’ll want to see if you have a mid that loves quirky illusions and brainteasers. Found in Dumfries, Scotland, it’s 30 acres in size and was created by revered architect, Charles Jencks.
From black holes to oriental landscaping, every new section of this location presents a new experience. There are terraces, sculptures, lakes, bridges, and a labyrinth of witty architectural works at Garden of Cosmic Speculation. Designed to detail the story of the universe and complexities of space and time, you can spend hours working out what Jencks meant by checked terraces, snail-formed mounds and zigzagging staircases.
According to the Foxtons garden study we mentioned previously, around 33% of Brits become competitive when it comes to gardening. This suggests that we have an affinity for aesthetically pleasing outdoor spaces, rather than just area that we can grow vegetables or do DIY.
If striking gardens that offer natural beauty are your thing, head to Kew Gardens in London — a major tourist attraction for UK and overseas visitors. According to the most recent report, Kew Gardens attracted 20% more people than the previous year. Clearly, it’s a destination worth considering if you’re planning an excursion.
What is there to see here? Plenty. The iconic glasshouse at Kew Gardens is surrounded by a collection of rare plants and immaculately kept lawns. In the evening, the area is illuminated spectacularly and during the day, you can wander around a maze of water features, buildings — such as the 18th-century pagoda — and wildlife — from peacocks and robins, to ducks and Chinese water dragons. If you visit, makes sure to see The Hive — a 17-metre, multi-sensory construction that changes depending on bee activity.
Award-winning #KewHive opens to the public this Saturday. Inspired by research into the health of bees, it is linked to a real beehive using accelerometer technology, causing the lights and unique soundscape inside to change in response to the activity of the bee colony. Google Kew Hive to find out more, or click on the Kew.org link in our profile. #London #architecture #bees #kewgardens #lovekew #kewhive