The Bambouseraie en Cévennes: bamboo in all its shapes and forms
Throughout its 160-year history, the Bambouseraie en Cévennes, on the south-eastern edge of the Cevennes National Park, has built up an impressive botanical collection of around 200 varieties of bamboo. The gardens inspire a sense a wonder and provide a radical change of scenery, inviting visitors to discover this far from wild grass in all its shapes and forms!
The Bambouseraie en Cévennes has assembled a collection of 200 varieties of bamboo
In 1856, avid botanist, Eugène Mazel, who grew up in Générargues, began acclimatising different Asian species of bamboo from China, Japan and the Himalayas to the Cevennes, together with other plants from around the world. These first botanical trials gave rise to the surprising Bambouseraie en Cévennes, which today is home to 200 varieties of bamboo spread over 12 hectares of rich alluvial soil protected by a micro climate, forming two highly beneficial factors for growing bamboo. While bamboo can reach dizzying heights (25m in Europe but up to 40m in Asia), it is, in fact, neither a tree nor a shrub but a grass! The buried part of the bamboo is called the rhizome. The rhizome fuels the growth of the bamboo by absorbing the water and nutrients it needs from the soil. The visible part consists of the culm or stem, which is a hollow, woody cane divided by nodes. Leaves then grow from the ends of the canes.
Bamboo is an amazing resource
Its many colours and widely varied shapes make it an ornamental plant with soothing properties. It is also famed for its hard, strong and flexible wood, which is used for building and as a raw material for handicrafts, while the bamboo shoots are edible. In short, bamboo is a fantastic plant that you can discover as you stroll along the paths in the Bambouseraie gardens. Lose yourself in the labyrinth, take to the heights with our Aerial Adventure, stand in awe before the giant bamboos, marvel at the specialist collection, learn more in the Bambusarium, wander through the bamboo forest, set out to visit the bamboo houses in the Laotian village and revel in the sheer spectacle of bamboo in all its shapes and forms.
A selection of bamboos to discover in the Bambouseraie en Cévennes.
- Pseudosasa japonica
- Phyllostachys aurea
- Phyllostachys edulis
- Phyllostachys edulis bicolor
- Phyllostachys sulphurea Robert Young
- Phyllostachys bambusoïdes (synonyme : reticula)
- Phyllostachys nigra
- Fargesia robusta ‘Wolong’, Fargesia angustissima, Fargesia SP ‘Red panda’ and Fargesia scabrida “Asian wonder”
Additional plants to see and discover during your walk
- Giant Magnolia
- A majestic 40 m-high oak
and much more besides…