Creating harmony, simplicity and peace in the landscape......

"Everything that slows us down and forces patience, everything that sets us back into the slow circles of nature, is a help.

Gardening is an instrument of grace. "

May Sarton

Monday, January 23, 2012

Jacques Majorelle and his Blue Garden

Blue features are the most mysterious elements in a landscape.

Nowhere is this more true than in the magnificent ‘Majorelle Garden’ located in the heart of Marrakesh, Morocco. Originally created in the 1920’s by the French artist and gardener, Jacques Majorelle (1886-1962), this remarkable 12 acre haven has revolutionized the way we think of color in the garden. 
Majorelle was an avid plant collector and filled his botanical park, now open to the public, with exotic plant species from all over the world.  But the overriding feature in this hot and dry environment is Majorelle’s favorite color: a rich shade of cobalt blue. It embellishes buildings, pergolas, fountains and more.

Photo from Talking Dog UK

This alluring color comes out of the traditional Moroccan aesthetic but Majorelle used 'his blue' with great abandon.  It serves as a spectacular backdrop for multi-colored bougainvillea, bright orange nasturtiums and planters filled with pinks, yellows and apple greens that are scattered about the grounds. In fact, he used it so extensively in the gardens that it now has a trademark name called, fittingly, ‘Majorelle Blue’.

Jacques Majorelle's garden was saved by Pierre Berge and Yves Saint Laurent, the great French fashion designer. Today the Majorelle workshop houses their magnificent Islamic art colleciton.  Put this on your gardens to visit list as it is a place of great serenity, luxurious vegetation and powerful inspiration...and a lot of cobalt blue.