Terra Botanica: the Angers theme park offers 3 ecological educational gardens and 2 weekends of activities around water management and biodiversity

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Terra Botanica, 1er European theme park dedicated to the world of plants and biodiversity, has around fifty activities and attractions on the 22 hectares of the park. Among them, 3 spaces allow visitors to come and find techniques and advice for green gardening: the Garden without water, the Vegetable garden and the Smart garden.

Several events and guided tours will take place in April and during a weekend dedicated to water management on April 22 and 23, and a second dedicated to biodiversity on May 13 and 14. In addition, 2 conferences will be held at the Terra Botanica Business Center: “Le Jardin Punk” by Éric Lenoir this Friday, April 14 and “Tolkien & les sciences” by Jean-Sébastien Steyer on May 12. At the beginning of June, the fun-educational park will make its great novelty for 2023 “La Canopée des Oiseaux” accessible to the public. For its second year, from July 14, Terra Nocta is enriched with two new poetic paintings.

The Terra Botanica Waterless Garden: an experimental space to learn how to garden without watering

This garden without watering Terra Botanica is a space composed of 120 species of plants from all over the world which have not been watered by the hand of man for almost 4 years, for ecological and economic reasons with the aim of reduce watering in the park. Through this 700 m² space, the park wishes to show the multitude of tree species adapted to drought, such as the arbutus, the cork oak, the holm oak or the Montpellier maple. A real time saver for the gardeners of the park since it is very economical in maintenance, this Mediterranean garden is totally autonomous and lets nature replace the gardener’s hand.

The plants and shrubs that make up the Waterless Garden can survive drought and cold (down to -20 degrees for some species), especially hairy plants such as epiaria or phlomis, which form a UV barrier to protect themselves from the rays. of the sun. The plants in this ornamental garden grow only with natural tools such as the choice of plant, the nature of their roots and the soil. The Terra Botanica Waterless Garden is an experimental place to inspire the developments and cities of tomorrow.

On April 22 and 23, guided tours will take place in the Jardin sans eau and the Potager on the occasion of the weekend dedicated to water in the Angevin park. The opportunity for visitors to reuse the techniques used in these spaces within their garden in order to use as little water as possible for gardening.

Natural gardening techniques within the 1000 m² Potager de Terra Botanica

Le Potager de Terra represents several hundred vegetables from all over the world, including a collection of tomatoes, squash, zucchini, cucumbers, pumpkins, onions and peppers. Several cultivation methods, particularly used in permaculture, are exhibited in this 1,000 m² vegetable garden. The Vegetable Garden highlights the diversity of fruits and vegetables and in particular the recovery of waste with the recycling of organic matter into compost.

Several unusual plants such as artemisia cola, which has the particularity of smelling like cola, or maritime mertensia, which tastes like oysters, are also featured in the vegetable garden. How does the ground work? What is mulching ? What can be put in the compost? How to protect your vegetable garden in a natural way? How to make a garden in a small space? The market gardener and the advisers present at the vegetable garden answer all these questions from visitors.

The idea of ​​the Terra Botanica Vegetable Garden is to transmit techniques, advice and environmentally friendly solutions that visitors can implement to cultivate their own vegetable garden, such as lasagna cultivation for example. This natural technique which aims to create a self-fertile mound consists of piling up green waste (leaves, grass, peelings) and brown waste (cardboard, wood) on several alternate layers to create a growing space, on which we go put compost already mature to be able to come to plant.

During the weekend of May 13 and 14 dedicated to biodiversity at Terra Botanica, visitors will have the opportunity, through one of the weekend’s activities, to taste wild edible plants in the vegetable garden, such as borage.

An educational garden that welcomes more than 1,000 students per year

Among the 40,000 students who pass through the doors of Terra Botanica each year to discover the world of plants and biodiversity, more than a thousand of them participate in the cultivation of an educational garden in the vegetable garden of the park. The students water, weed, plant, sow and harvest what can be found in the vegetable garden, while reviewing the anatomy of plants. In total, there are more than twenty fun-educational workshops on the Angevin park for students.

Le Jardin Malin: learning while having fun for the little ones and advice on natural practices

How do you garden smart? It is within the 400 m² of the Smart Garden of Terra Botanica that visitors will be able to find the answers to this question. Between riddles, games, advice and discovery, the Jardin Malin aims to highlight natural and technical approaches that respect the environment to maintain your garden. Several gardening tools (small wheelbarrow, claw, watering can, magnifying glass, etc.) are available to children who, for example, would like to observe the earth and the small animals that live there. This garden comes as much to teach the little ones as to advise the older ones. The Terra Botanica team present at Le Jardin Malin shares their valuable gardening advice, for example concerning the varieties of plants that are easier to grow than others.

From animal biodiversity to different soils and bee plants

This zero phytosanitary product garden (like the rest of the park) is made up of several spaces, each with a different theme: animal biodiversity with in particular a beehive and a large compost to understand its importance – weeds to show the role of wild plants – the vegetable garden where, for example, disease-resistant tomato varieties are exhibited – honey-producing plants essential for pollinators – the different soils with the species that inhabit them and the use of green manures – manure and natural remedies to heal plants – natural lagooning which allows the filtration of water by plants. This very lively garden is capable of self-defense with, for example, predators (insects) that control aphids or even birds that eat certain caterpillars.

2 major conferences by Éric Lenoir and Jean-Sébastien Steyer at the Terra Botanica Business Center

April 14: Conference “Le Jardin Punk» by Eric Lenoir. “By dint of looking for nature, we end up finding it”. Éric Lenoir presents here a non-gardening manual for lazy, rebellious, broke and green people. His work was awarded by the AJJH (Association of Garden and Horticulture Journalists).

May 12: Conference “Tolkien and the sciences” by Jean-Sébastien Steyer. 38 experts (archaeologists, astrophysicists, philosophers, paleontologists, economists, psychoanalysts, volcanologists, botanists, chemists, doctors, etc.) have sifted through Tolkien’s works to reveal their scientific roots.

What a beautiful program!
That’s great.

Catherine Mills Avatar