This garden on the Mediterranean coast of Southern France was created by Major Lawrence Johnston (1871 - 1958), designer and plantsman, born in London into an American family. I've never been to his garden in England, Hidcote Manor, but visited Serre de la Madone twice: in May 2013 and in May 2014.
Our first visit was wonderful and exciting, but most of the pictures were lost during my camera's battery failure while uploading. To heal the wound, we managed to squeeze a second visit there into our European trip in 2014.
After his death, Serre de la Madone was held by several owners and eventually was abandoned with plants growing on their own. In 1990, the estate was listed as an Historic monument, and in 1999 was acquired by the French coastal conservation agency, Conservatoire du Littoral. An extensive restoration program was undertaken between 2000 and 2005 mostly by volunteers who were members of the Association for the Preservation and Enhancement of the Serre de la Madone Garden. Botanist Pierre Auge and landscape architects Arnaud Maurieres and Eric Ossart led the effort.
Hold on now! We have about 200 pictures to see! The day was bright and sunny. I hope you are wearing comfortable shoes and have a bottle of water. Major Johnston chose this site because of its mild micro climate, and it was pretty hot here already in May!