The exotic garde,
of the city of Eze
The exotic garden of Eze offers an exotic tour through the heart of exotic, Mediterranean and subtropical vegetation with the intense azure of the Mediterranean Sea as a backdrop.
To the south, the exotic garden and its collection of succulents
The exotic garden of Eze brings together 3 types of vegetation, exotic, Mediterranean and subtropical, divided into 3 gardens according to the type of soil and exposure.
The first garden to emerge from the ground is the exotic garden. A few years after the end of World War II, in 1949, as a sign of renewal after a dark period, André Gianton, mayor of Eze, decided to develop a botanical garden in the heart of the ruins of an old fortress. medieval village located on a steep promontory which rises to more than 1.300 feet above sea level. He is assisted in his project by Jean Gastaud, who is none other than the creator of the Exotic Garden of Monaco.
Work begins on the southern slope. Taking advantage of the southern exposure, the significant drainage due to the slope, and the fact that this plot is protected from cold winds by the Revère plateau, the gardener recommends the planting of a set of succulents from the regions desert in North America, South Africa and Mexico. Indeed, succulents are adapted to aridity and extreme heat thanks to the fleshy parts located in their leaves and their stems in which they store water. This is how Cactaceae (cacti), Crassulaceae (crassulas), Euphorbiaceae (euphorbias), Agavaceae (agaves) Aizoaceae (lithops), Liliaceae (aloes) take place in what will become the exotic garden of Eze. The collection in the Eze garden is exceptional. Indeed, the hot and dry conditions favored the development of certain subjects to a level seldom reached on the French Riviera.
Two other gardens are then created.
To the north, the Mediterranean garden, an alliance of indigenous and exotic species
The northern slope, which is more shade and more humid in essence, lends itself to the planting of local species such as myrtles, cistus, euphorbias and strawberry trees. To bring a touch of exoticism, tree ferns from New Zealand, agapanthus, from South Africa or hostas, from China combine with Mediterranean vegetation.
The Mediterranean garden that visitors discover today is due to the collaboration between the firm Jean Mus & compagnie, recognized for its expertise in Mediterranean garden planning, and the municipal Green Space team. After 6 months of work, the northern part, which remained closed for more than two decades, reopened in 2014.
Based on the drawings made by Bruno Ricci, main collaborator of the landscape architect Jean Mus, the 0,27 acres of the northern plot has undergone a fundamental change: clearing work, creation of stairs, paths, courtyards, pockets of vegetation, addition of false rocks, new low-consumption lighting, integration of a watering system, then the addition of some 100 tons of soil and more than 1,200 plants. From now on, visitors can enjoy moments of rest in the caves cooled by the flow of water and the superb spectacle of the Mediterranean garden which majestically covers the steep north slope of the exotic garden of Eze.
Full west, discovering subtropical plants
The subtropical garden occupies the western part of the exotic garden of Eze. The term subtropical refers to areas of the globe adjacent to the tropics characterized by a temperate climate, long, hot, summers and mild winters. Subtropical plants are therefore particularly hardy plants able to withstand extreme heat and periods of drought such as heavy rains and temperatures sometimes approaching 0 ° C. They are imported from the southern United States, Spain, Portugal, northern and southern points of Africa, southern Australia, the Middle East, parts of South America and Southeast Asia. The Mediterranean climate, also temperate, is favorable to the acclimatization of subtropical plants.
The subtropical garden of Eze is home to a diverse plant collection including, for example, cycads, dicksonias, cyperus, gunneras, alocasia, etc. A pergola, a mist and a waterfall bring a little freshness. The western part of the exotic garden of Eze offers visitors an unrivaled view of the Mediterranean landscapes as far as Saint-Tropez.