The Water Lily Garden that inspired Monet

Historic cradle of water lilies, French National Water Lily Collection, the Latour-Marliac Water Lily Garden was founded in 1875 at Le Temple-sur-Lot by Joseph Latour-Marliac with the aim of propagating, cultivating and marketing hardy water lilies. Joseph Latour-Marliac had discovered a mysterious process to hybridize water lilies.
Unique site in the world, the Water Lily Garden seduced Claude Monet who immortalized it in his paintings.
The artist had discovered these water lilies at the Universal Exhibition in Paris in 1889 where they were unveiled at the Trocadéro, at the same time as the Eiffel Tower.
After several changes of ownership, the nursery was bought in 2007 by an American, Robert Sheldon.
Today, the nursery, the oldest water lily nursery in the world, offers 2.5 hectares of gardens with exotic greenhouses, giant water lilies, bamboo grove, Japanese bridge and more than 250 species of rustic and tropical water lilies.
Not forgetting a museum and a restaurant area.


The Museum

The museum offers a selection of documents from the archives, such as correspondence between Mr. Latour-Marliac and his contemporaries, including Eugène Mazel (founder of the Bambouseraie d'Anduze), the impressionist painter Claude Monet and the chief gardeners of Bagatelle, Kew Gardens and more.

It is organized around two main themes:
The life of Mr. Latour-Marliac and his family, with a focus on the story of his invention of the coloured water lilies.

It also traces the commercialization of these through the creation of the nursery, with a focus on the evolution of the business since its inception in 1875.

In addition to archive documents, the museum contains many objects, tools, furniture and personal effects that belonged to Mr. Latour-Marliac.

The water lily collection, one of the largest in the world, contains more than 300 varieties of rustic and tropical water lilies.

Its purpose is to preserve the old varieties, as well as to show the incredible diversity that exists today in water lilies by presenting the most recent varieties.

The collection is installed in the old ponds built by Mr. Latour-Marliac in 1870.

Latour-Marliac was named Remarkable Garden in 2004 by the Ministry of Culture and Communication.


The Water Lily Garden
Le Bourg
47110 Le Temple-sur-Lot
Tel: 05 53 01 08 05


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To go further....

Les Nénuphars et Bory Latour Marliac

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En 1889, le pépiniériste Latour-Marliac présenta à l´Exposition Universelle de Paris des plantes d´un nouveau genre, des nénuphars hybrides et colorés qui firent sensation. Ils attirèrent aussi l'oeil du peintre Claude Monet qui en fut si émerveillé qu il construisit son jardin d'eau à Giverny et commanda une grande variété de nénuphars à Latour-Marliac. Ce nouveau livre de Caroline Holmes relate tout en images l'histoire de la pépinière de Temple-sur-Lot, son rôle dans la diffusion des nénuphars, mais aussi dans la naissance du chef-d'oeuvre de Claude Monet : Les Nymphéas.
Nymphaea 'Marliacea Rosea' – Nénuphar rose – rhizome – vorgetrieben – Hederifolium

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Nymphaea pygmaea Alba – Nénuphar blanc

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