In Bonac-la-Cote, Francis tells us about his trip to the Japanese garden and the wonders

Every night I sleep in the garden in Japan, “admits Francis Leobon.

During the day, he spends a lot of time in his 5,000 m2 “walking” garden, as he puts it: a set of attached gardens. Algae Gardens, Landscape Gardens, Jane Gardens, all gather at home in a single green space.

Jane portrait

The question, “What do you remember after twenty years of this passion?”, Francis replied. “It will take more than twenty years to complete the work of the garden. Faced with plants, Francis recalls the importance of the word humility towards plants. “You have to keep in tune with nature, it’s not easy, but slowly, over 20 years, it is entering the consciousness of the Japanese garden.”

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The land of the rising sun, unfortunately, he did not set foot there. “We traveled a lot because we worked at the SNCF and I was part of the CSP spy team on Michelle Gomez’s good day,” the source said. “We went to spy on the teams they were going to meet next and all over Europe. Since then, I don’t want to travel anymore. “These gardens meet through the book.” The first book I bought was written by three Japanese people on the Bonsai theme at Fnac in Paris. I have imagined the garden, I have adapted it to my land. To create a vision, we must always remember to highlight the places.

In the early stages of gardening, “we have to let it mature before we can do anything, it makes us patient”, enthusiastically recommends. For example, this is the spirit of peace that Francis tries to convey to us. A short anecdote from the master of the place: Fukutsu (-en) is the name of these places, but also given for the association run by Francis and a friend … , It means “stomach ache”. Much less poetic.

Reminding Japanese visitors, Francis does not hide his amazement by noticing their emotions in front of certain parts of the garden: especially the tea pavilion, including Tokonoma (an area in his own right that is free for the pleasure of the eye. A place of life).

Here and there

Sealed by the Japanese spirit, Francis has succeeded in playing this crazy bet of mixing the Japanese heritage with the natural heritage of the region. Wine has all the minerals, this same stone is coming from Ambazac’s road creation. The goal for him is to have a French garden meant to have this atmosphere from somewhere else.

In the end, according to Francis, when you enter a garden and you do not develop the emotion “good is very bad, it is missed”. In some parts of the garden, they say, “I feel good here.” It’s hard to explain, but it means that I got something and that is the best compliment. Want to spend time, they can come and recharge their batteries in this unique place.

Practice. The inspection for this spring and this autumn has already been completed However, on June 3, 4 and 5, 2022, other gardens will open their doors to Rendez-Vous Ox Jardin. Find tours June 3, 4 and 5:

Open garden

Fremantle. A new garden in Fremantle, a place called Le Grand Bagnol, is opening its doors. It is organized in two parts around an old farmhouse. Above, the large part is lined with hedges, which attract birds. The lower part consists mainly of perennials, roses, clematis and shrubs, some rare. Admission is 5 euros, free for children under 18. Profits are donated to associations for sick or disabled children. Open on June 3, 4 and 5 in the afternoon. Details at

Limoges. Located on the shores of Vienna and inspired by the Franco-Italian, Paudrie’s private garden (a place of the same name) is more than four hectares wide. The outdoor theater offers a beautiful view of Vienna and the garden. It contains over four hundred plants, a variety of flowers, and especially a century-old flat tree. Free admission. Open to the public on Sunday afternoons.

Couzeix. By June 3, 4, 5 or by appointment, Raymond Mazerolas opened his orchard (5 allée de Gorceix) to the public. At the heart of Couzeix is ​​a true “green lung”, an English-style garden, with pastel colors and ecological functionality that respects ecosystems and biodiversity. The birds build their nests in bouquet hedges or in twenty nest boxes made by the owner of the place. There is an insect in the hotel plants. Over time, Raymond devised mulching techniques to drastically reduce his love for trees and water use. Admission 4 euros, group rate (minimum five people) 3 euros.

Eva Fleury

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