Monday, January 27, 2014

Madeira Series: Palheiro Gardens

Madeira is full of beautiful of gardens, in fact you can even argue that the entire island is a garden. The Palheiro Gardens, better known as Blandy's Garden is one of their more popular public ones and is also known for it's quintessentially English style. Owned by the Blandy family since 1885, it has a sunken garden, topiaries, and an overall planting scheme that is more reminiscent of traditional English gardens spiced with a few exotic plants dotted all over.


This garden could have well been in England...
It was February when we visited so deciduous trees haven't leafed out yet


Underplanted with Farfugium japonicum 'Aureomaculatum'
Beautiful views of the island from the garden

Did I mention topiaries? They have some very interesting ones there...


We don't know what this is supposed to be apart from what the imagination implies...
These are supposed to be chickens...
We don't know what this one is either. Upturned nose?
The overall style and planting scheme of this garden may be English, it is still Madeira and some exotics plants were integrated into their borders and large specimens can be found dotted all over.


Where England meets Madeira...
Agave attenuata

Yucca rostrata


Euphorbia stygiana
Aloe brevifolia

Protea cynaroides
This garden is such a 'mixed bag' yet is pleasant enough to visit and spend some time in...







It may not be one of our favourites but we'd still say it's a must to visit this garden when in Madeira for a few days.

Even if it's at least to see their quirky topiaries!

Mark :-)

30 comments:

  1. I can't believe how lush everything is. Madeira must get quite bit of precipitation compared to, say, the Canary Islands. Gotta look that up...

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    1. They do Gerhard, that's why the island is so lush and conducive to gardening. The main island doesn't get too warm in the summer either, the land of eternal spring...

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  2. The topiaries made me laugh! Chickens? Maybe they haven't finished hatching. I loved the old knotty tree, as I always admire ancient trees with lots of character.

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    1. They're good fun to look at aren't they Debs? :) Those gnarly trees have bags of character!

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  3. What great photos, it looks wonderful. I love the sculptural look of the leafless trees. I have always wanted to go to Madeira. Did you walk along the levadas?

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    1. Thanks Chloris! Yes we did, some levadas are easier to walk through than others, and the sceneries on each of them are almost always stunning!

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  4. I can't say that the topiaries impressed me but the trees and the rest of the garden certainly did.

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    1. Those gnarly, old trees are gorgeous, perhaps even more so whilst leafless!

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  5. Haha, the topiaries! I can just picture whoever made them giving them one final look and thinking, 'right, I'm happy with that', before moving on to the next one.

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    1. You can't just stop at one Amy, lol! :)

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  6. I was paging along thinking "beautiful"..."interesting"..."beautiful"..."interesting"...until that completely unexpected protea flower jumped out at me. Man I love those things....

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    1. That protea pic does stand out amongst the rest Loree! Always a gorgeous sight that flower!

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  7. What an intriguing mix of styles, and something that would be easy to achieve in lots of the milder areas in the UK too, though I think the surrounding landscape is a major reason for how well it works. I love the gnarly tree in the second picture, perfect living sculpture, but that topiary looks as if it should come with batteries...

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    1. Hahaha!! That battery comment made me really lough out loud Janet!!

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  8. Fantastic gardens. Well not so much the topiary. They might want to rethink those. :) Otherwise everything there is lovely.
    Cher Sunray Gardens

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    1. It's a relaxing garden to visit Cher!

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  9. An interesting place to be sure! The topiaires are certainly, ahem, unusual. Loved your comment, "you can't stop at one." Funny. It's interesting to see the exotics peppered through the somewhat traditional English garden. You guys visit the coolest places!

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    1. Glad you noticed that comment Peter, and it's true though, lol!!

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  10. "Quirky" is right! I was encouraged by the exotics mixed in: something I've been mulling over for a while. I don't think they look terribly out of place.

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    1. I agree Ricki, the exotics didn't look out of place at all, rather they enhanced the beds :)

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  11. The protea is amazing, and I love the shot above it with the two purple aeoniums. That's a beautiful planting. The "upturned nose" could be a chair, perhaps? I won't comment on the . . . other topiary.

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    1. It could well be a chair Evan, haven't thought of that before. And yes that bed with aeoniums does look nice :)

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  12. Beautiful garden; you guys must have got lost as it seems to have some very exotic plants :-). Where is this island?

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    1. It is a stunning island KL :) It's on the Atlantic ocean lying somewhat between Portugal and North Africa.

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  13. Oh boy, those topiaries (ha, that auto-corrected to "koi armies") . . . Wow. Everything else I like!

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    1. Those topiaries were good fun in their own way Heather. Certainly brings smiles :)

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  14. I've never been, Boys but it does look very intriguing and beautiful. (I hope you weren't too giggly with some of that topiary). And nice to see the Farfugium japonicum 'Aureomaculatum!' Dave

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    1. David, you ought to visit soon, you'll love the sceneries and the levadas!

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  15. What a beautiful garden! I love the red ribbon in the first pic. And that tree is lovely even without leaves. I do wonder about those topiaries, though. I wouldn't know how to shape one, but surely they could find someone proficient in that art to help out. Or maybe they're more of a 'free-form' style of topiary! Your comments about them made me laugh!

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  16. Thanks for the tour guys. I want to go there!

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