Jardins du Musee International de la Perfume Mouans – Sartoux France
The title of this demonstration garden is probably best translated into English as the ‘Botanic Gardens of the international Perfume Museum’. You are likely to find it interesting if you are intrigued to see the some of the plants which provide the raw components for the perfume industry, or you are just fascinated by horticulture/gardens. It is situated near a large commercial garden centre on the outskirts of Mouans, off the Casino supermarket roundabout. It is on a rather uninspiring flat, 2 hectare site. Do not expect a beautifully laid out garden, first impressions are of a field, predominantly covered by low growing vegetation, although there is a more ‘traditional garden’ incorporated into part of the design. What is in flower will obviously depend of the time of year which visit, May is probably best (centre only open May to September). There is good signage in both English and French describing the different beds and excellent additional notes in English available to borrow from reception. The purpose is to display the flowering plants such as roses, jasmine. Lavender, tuberose and oranges which provide chemical scent sources for the French perfume industry. The Grasse area to produce many of these crops for the industry , but as the notes point out they are now sourced from around the world dependent upon such factors as where they grow best, how many crops can be achieved each year and labour cost.
After about 30 minutes of wandering and reading you will most likely find yourself captivated by the place. The commitment of the small staff is obvious , as their dedication to organic gardening and the encouragement of wildlife.
Well worth a visit; you are guaranteed to learn something new, even if it only about the different parts of plants other than flowers which provide source scents, as they still cannot be artificially synthesised. A visitor attraction with unrealised potential.
Entry €4 .Closed Tuesdays. large free car park. Very small shop. Small indoor interpretive display. Toilets. Cold drinks machine.
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