As Ralph Waldo Emerson once said: “All my hurts my garden spade can heal.” The 2017 edition of Paysalia’s Carré des Jardiniers focuses on the theme ‘The good care of Doctor Garden’, with the competition’s five finalists showcasing their vision for boosted health, wellness and creativity in nature’s backyard. So, who will take home the Master Gardener Trophy this year?
Mathias Bonnin: a garden for every mood
Mathias Bonnin’s love of gardening has been passed down through the generations. Having grown up surrounded by the great outdoors, Mathias followed in his father’s footsteps, becoming a landscape gardener before launching his own company, Paysage Conception.
Mathias’ Garden ‘Pour tous’ (For All) is a space dedicated to health and wellbeing, where every visitor – old or young, with or without a disability – is encouraged to find their own space for reflection. The garden’s tranquil environment brings together plants, stonework, sculpture and water features.
With its patio, interactive video projector and library, Mathias’s installation offers an escape from the worries and stresses of everyday life, where visitors can lose themselves for an hour, a day, or a lifetime.
Mathias views the Carré des Jardiniers as a new and intriguing challenge, one that has given him the chance to fully express his creativity. With his garden, Mathias wants to create a public, yet private space that’s truly unique for each visitor.
Étienne Bourdon: gardening as a form of therapy
With almost a decade’s experience studying the links between health and environment, Étienne Bourdon wears many hats: geriatric physician, agricultural biologist and landscape gardener to name just a few, as well as owning landscaping agency O Ubi Campi.
Entitled ‘Vivre heureux avec Alzheimer’ (Living fully with Alzheimer’s), Étienne’s project is more than a garden. The installation draws on Étienne’s research examining how gardening can positively impact health, specifically in evaluating and treating patients diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.
‘Living fully with Alzheimer’s’ takes the form of twelve individual workshops designed to reinforce classical cognitive therapy techniques. The shapes, colours, and sizes of the installation’s plants and flowers were all selected to appeal to patients suffering from the most common secondary symptoms experienced by Alzheimer’s patients, such as sleeping problems, disorientation and anxiety.
For Étienne, 2017’s Carré des Jardiniers is a great opportunity to showcase this hands-on approach, proving that with the right expertise, it’s possible to transform an outdoor space into an interactive therapy garden.
Looking inward with Anne Cabrol
Former florist Anne Cabrol has always associated gardening with a sense of inner peace and wellbeing. Today, she works as a graphic designer for landscaping agency Tarvel.
Anne contributes to this competition with ‘Les Gens Heureux’ (Happy People), a series of spaces dedicated to the feelings, emotions and experiences that make us who we are. Visitors are encouraged to be fully present while enjoying the garden.
A journey designed to engage all five senses, ‘Les Gens Heureux’ begins with visitors walking barefoot on a carpet of moss, before entering a universe where wood, stone, copper and nature live together in perfect harmony. It’s up to you to decide how the journey continues: a visit to the vegetable garden? An afternoon reading in a cosy nook? Illustrating the garden’s drawing wall? The choice is yours.
Anne Cabrol chooses to contribute to this year’s Carré des Jardiniers because of the thematic, in which she has a great interest, but also because she considers Paysalia as a major event in landscape industry.
Alban de la Tour: liberty through nature
Landscape gardener Alban de La Tour, of Lyon-based agency L’atelier de Beauverney, combines his love of gardens with his passion for the environment.
Alban’s project ‘Liberté’ (Liberty) aims to break negative stereotypes surrounding illness and disability, encouraging those struggling with health issues or disabilities to reclaim their social identity. Visitors take part in a choreographed journey that plays with traditional ideas of perspective, ambiance and layout, creating an unexpectedly peaceful atmosphere.
This garden allows visitors to fully relax in a safe, secure environment, offering spaces for self-reflection, a vegetable garden, and even an ‘animal kingdom’ for a chance to reconnect with our furry friends.
Alban still remembers the first time he attended a Paysalia event, experiencing our previous ‘open gardens’ as a visitor. Ever since, he knew that he’d come back one day as a candidate to the Carré des Jardiniers!
Passionate, determined, innovative, each of our finalists deserve their reputation as experts in their field. Come and discover their interpretation of what can happen when wellbeing and nature work together, from December 5 to December 7 at Paysalia’s Carré des Jardiniers!
Photo credit: Pixabay / 3345408