Meeting with Jean-Louis Roland, head gardener of the Garden and Objects of Panears

Meeting with Jean-Louis Roland, head gardener of the Garden and Objects of Panears

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Nestled in the heart of the Vosges mountains, very close to the Bresse ski slopes, the Panrée garden has been cultivated for almost ten years by a group of friends passionate about nature. This large multicolored space, hanging on the hill, has the particularity of staging various objects and works of art around its alleys. Like an impressionist painting, it consists of different plots forming a patchwork as harmonious as it is fragrant! We met Jean-Louis Roland, head gardener of this atypical plant space, who passionately told us about his daily life in the garden of wonders.

The Garden & Objects of Panrés is above all a story of friendship…

Absolutely ! This former cow meadow, originally intended for grazing as well as for the cultivation of hemp and potatoes, was made available to us by Yvon Maréchal, its owner. We are a group of friends living in the large neighboring cities of Lorraine - Metz, Nancy ... - and we have always used to come and spend the holidays there to relax ... and garden! For more than ten years, we have cleaned, brushed, planted plants, even going so far as to block the forest which was beginning to encroach on the ground. Over the years, we have created an old apple orchard, a space dedicated to the local flora - which we promote as much as possible - planted different varieties of shrubs, grasses and perennials that formed the garden such as it is today.

Where did the idea to integrate objects in the garden come from?

I am sensitive to beautiful objects, and I find that a work can be totally sublimated by the surrounding nature - and vice versa. So I placed in the garden various objects and works made by artists from the region, as and when various arrangements. Ceramics, glass or metal sculptures, but also mirrors and chimes naturally find their place along the route taken by visitors. The paths are also dotted with pretty letters of the alphabet carved in larch so that no one loses the thread of the route!

What are the most emblematic plants of the Panrée garden?

I think that the monard, by its size, the diversity of its colors but also by its "presence", perfectly represents our garden. In general, we like rare and exuberant plants, however we prefer plants adapted to the acid soil of the Vosges region (hydrangeas, heather, rhododendrons, azaleas ...) because the climate remains harsh and cannot accept flowers from hot regions. Visitors can discover in our plant labyrinth more than 1300 varieties of flowers, trees and shrubs, most of which are labeled. Our collections are growing year by year, in particular thanks to exchanges with other gardens, and we do our best to bring a moment of relaxation and wonder to the public!
The Garden and Objects of Panears 1, Chemin des Panrées 88310 Cornimont - France //

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