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Québec’s International Garden Festival

Submitted by on May 4, 2010 – 1:36 amOne Comment
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Here’s a don’t-miss event, Road Trips Gardeners! The 11th edition of the International Garden Festival will be held from June 26 to October 3, 2010, in Canada’s Les Jardins de Métis/Reford Gardens on Route 132 in Grand-Métis, on the south shore of the St. Lawrence River, mid-way between Rimouski and Matane, Québec (about 220 miles northeast of Québec City).

Ranked among the leading garden festivals in the world, the International Garden Festival presents temporary gardens at the cutting edge of garden design, landscape, architecture, design and environmental art. Launched in 2000, the Festival has presented over 80 gardens by more than 200 designers from fifteen countries, and has attracted more than 800,000 visitors.

Some 276 proposals for conceptual gardens were submitted by over 600 architects, landscape architects, designers and artists from 34 countries. The three teams chosen by the jury to create new gardens in 2010 are Studio Bryan Hanes (Bryan Hanes, Jose Menendez, Yadiel Rivera Diaz, Brenna Herpmann) landscape architects, and DIGSAU (Jules Dingle, Jeff Goldstein, Mark Sanderson, Jamie Unkefer, Aaron Jezzi) architects, all based in Philadelphia, USA, and their project “Veil Garden”; Habitation (David Vago, Simone Marsh and Nick Brown) landscape architects from Sydney, Australia, and their project “The grass is greener”, and Rosetta Sarah Elkin, a Canadian landscape architect based in Amsterdam, Netherlands, and her project “Tiny Taxonomy”.

These new gardens will join those that are returning for presentation in 2010: Forest.Square.Sky by Suresh Perera (Montréal); Seedling by Mateo Pinto, Carolina Cisneros, Victoria Marshall (New York City); Dymaxion Sleep by Jane Hutton, Adrian Blackwell (Toronto) – Gold Medal, Landscape Architecture Category, 2009 Design Exchange Award; HAHA! by spmb (Eduardo Aquino, Karen Shanski, Ralf Glor and Matt Baker from Winnipeg) and Martin Gagnon (Montréal); Every garden needs a shed and a lawn!by Deborah Nagan (United Kingdom); Bois de biais by Atelier le balto (Véronique Haucheur, Marc Pouzol, Marc Vatinel from France and Germany); Réflexions colorées by Hal Ingberg (Montréal); Bascule by Cédule 40 (Julien Boily, Sonia Boudreau, Étienne Boulanger and Noémie Payant-Hébert from Saguenay); SoundFIELD by Doug Moffat and Steve Bates (Montréal); Fractal Garden by Legge Lewis Legge (Andrea Legge, Deborah Lewis and Murray Legge from New York City and Austin, Texas); Réflexions suspendues by Francesca Moretti, Federico Brancalion, Rodolfo Roncella and Mirando Di Prinzio (Italy); Le Bon Arbre au Bon Endroit by NIP Paysage(Mathieu Casavant, France Cormier, Josée Labelle, Michel Langevin, Mélanie Mignault from Montréal), and the iconic Blue Stick Garden by Claude Cormier (Montréal).

Situated at the confluence of the Métis and the St. Lawrence rivers, Les Jardins de Métis are high above the water’s edge. Elsie Reford created these gardens at Estevan, the property she had been given by her uncle, George Stephen (founder of the Canadian Pacific Railway). She fished for salmon on the Métis river, making the trip from her home in Montréal every summer. In the 1920’s she began transforming her property into a garden, and this became the passion that ruled her life. Over more than thirty years she designed and developed a garden that is renowned for its imagination, its unique botanical collection and the careful integration of plants in a naturalistic setting. Located 220 miles northeast of Quebec City, at 48.51º N. latitude, the gardens were the northernmost in the eastern half of North America. Known to some as Les Jardins de Métis, to others as Reford Gardens, the gardens have become famous since they were opened to the public in 1962. Today the gardens are home to more than 3,000 species, cultivars and varieties of plants, both native and exotic.

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