If you're like me gardening is going to be a big part of what gets me through the next few months - I've been binging on garden purchases from small things like seeds to larger splurges like David Austin bare root roses and looking for the best online gardening content to enhance my learning and general mood. I'll be sharing my favorite gardening quarantine tips here on the regular (because what else I'm I going to do while the baby naps?).
For your amusement today here are 6 of my favorite virtual garden tours, watch parties or documentaries currently available online to help you practice a little informed escapism and inspire you to tend to your own garden, terrace or indoor plant collection.
1. New York Botanical Garden's Orchid Show Watch Party
Having seen Jeff Leatham speak on his personal obsession with the Vanda orchid and regale us with hilarious self-effusive encounters with the rich and famous I am a total convert and think the man is a design genius. It's a travesty not more people will get to see this show in person but all is not lost as NYBG is broadcasting a 2o min insider extravaganza tour of the exhibit narrated by Marc Hachadourian, NYBG Senior Curator of Orchids. The best part is your view will be 100% unobstructed by crowds! The virtual tour is available to WATCH HERE
2. Jardin Exotique, Monaco
Virtually stroll through a breathtaking collection of succulents and cacti originating in far flung locations perched up on the Monaco cliffs with quintessential Côte d'Azur views of the Mediterranean below. As a bonus, the virtual tour also takes you down the 300 steps into the Observation Cave 100 meters above sea level without having to break a sweat. The cavern boasts limestone stalagmites, stalactites and other rocky protrusions, some of which contain animal bone fragments as evidence of the presence of prehistoric men. WATCH HERE.
3. Babylonstoren, South Africa
If you follow me on Instagram you may have noticed that I'm a little obsessed with Babylonstoren, a restored Cape Dutch farm in the South African winelands just outside Cape Town. As we sadly will no longer be able to host people there this year I'm pleased that this beautiful ode to the garden was documented by the garden travel guru himself, Monty Don. This gentleman's farm meets organic everything-to-table oasis with its orchards, healing garden and waddling geese, is a lesson in holistic gardening integrity and a sheer delight to visit or watch anytime of the year! WATCH HERE:
4. Sissinghurst Garden, England
Enjoy Sissinghurst at the height of its summer abundance as captured in this June 2019 footage including a peek at their famed historic Iris collection. The gardens at Sissinghurst were created by Vita Sackville-West and Harold Nicolson (prolific writer and gardener and diplomat respectively) and were host to a collection of English intellectuals called the Bloomsbury group, including most famously Virginia Woolf, Vita’s lover, who lived nearby at Monk’s House. WATCH HERE:
5. Piet Oudolf's Home Garden, Hummelo
From the dutch master of the meadow garden who brought us The Highline in New York, this impeccably shot video of Piet at home with his process and unique expression of native plant design shows us the magic of an Oudolf perennial wildflower garden reverberating lightness and effortlessness throughout an ever changing year in the garden. WATCH HERE:
6. Buffalo Botanical Gardens, Virtual Tour
If you've had some of the US's incredible botanical gardens on your bucket list some are making it easier than ever to experience them with incredibly filmed virtual tours. This 3D virtual tour by the Buffalo and Erie Botanical Gardens is captivating in its realism and specifically worth watching if you have a thing for greenhouses - they boast twelve incredible glass houses modeled on England's famous Crystal Palace. WATCH HERE
Bonus vintage material:
Audrey Hepburn's Rose Gardens of the World - filled with charm and a great rose history lesson
Christopher Lloyd at home at Great Dixter - for proper English accents and the great designer's own thoughts on his life's work.