On Sunday 20 March from 11.00 to 17.00, a day devoted to the Kitchen Garden at Château de Prangins marks the launch of a wide array of new activities in Switzerland’s largest historical kitchen garden. The Swiss National Museum invites visitors to rediscover this enchanting and poetical place!
The Kitchen Garden dates all the way back to 1729, when the Château was built by Baron Louis Guiguer, and was originally intended solely to feed some 40 people. It is laid out in a manner typical of kitchen gardens in the 18th century, with four plant beds separated by two perpendicular pathways meeting at a central basin, surrounded by high walls decked with espaliered fruit trees. Today, the Kitchen Garden at Château de Prangins is the largest historical garden of its kind in Switzerland. Extending over 5,500 m2 – the size of a small football field – it is home to almost 200 fruit and vegetable varieties that are often overlooked and sometimes entirely forgotten.
With the advent of spring, the Kitchen Garden will be presenting itself in its brand-new identity, offering a wide variety of cultural activities including guided tours by specialists once a month in French and English dealing with a range of topics (the environment, detox, composting), a free booklet of activities for children, guided tours in the form of role plays for young visitors, workshops centred around the herbarium or the beehives, holiday workshops, birthday celebrations in the Kitchen Garden as well as natural dyeing workshops for budding artists!
School classes are welcome. A detailed and innovative teaching pack which is freely available at the museum will help teachers and their students prepare for their visit.
To make the most of this unique site, an educational exhibition focusing on the seasons is on display in the Gardener’s House. Additionally, Château de Prangins offers two unmissable free events: Rendez-vous au Jardin and the Café Climat on the theme of biodiversity on 22 May, and Swiss Castle Day on 2 October, with an autumn market at which visitors can taste fruit and vegetables from the Kitchen Garden. Seasonal produce from the garden can also be savoured in the gourmet dishes served up by the Café du Château.
There is also an audioguide in French, German and English, so that visitors can explore the Kitchen Garden under their own steam. Finally, admission is free all year round. A perfect place to stroll or daydream, the Kitchen Garden is sure to delight everyone from horticulturalists to schoolchildren and their families!