Transgardens presents the pedagogical garden set up on Le Grand Potager de Fontenille, in Lauris, Luberon, in the south of France. This project is initiated  by The Ivory Foundation.

Le Grand Potager, France

A vegetable garden of 4500m2, set up on an organic vineyard, in the privileged setting of the Luberon in the south of France. The Grand Potager welcomes adults, and children from the schools located in Lauris and in the surrounding villages, to raise their awareness of biodiversity and sustainable agricultural techniques.


Find The Grand Potager on the website and on Facebook

An educational and experimental project funded by The Ivory Foundation

  • Discover bellow the last posts from the Grand Potager de Fontenille !

Experimentation of the set-in-nature theatre at the Grand Potager

Track game at the Grand Potager series 5/5 Last step of the discovery day at the Grand Potager. This open-air theatre is a mere frame made of wooden tubes which is fastened between two small trees. Inspired by puppet theatre, … Read More

Balancing game at the Grand Potager

Track game at the Grand Potager series 4/5 Another step in the discovery day at the Grand Potager. Balance, patience and focus, all of these were required for the children to succeed in the balancing game’s journey. The game consists … Read More

Land art activity at the Grand Potager

Track game at the Grand Potager series 3/5 Third step of the discovery day at the Grand Potager: land art ! This artform consists in using materials from nature for esthetics purposes. The children had the opportunity to create their … Read More

Observation and drawing at the Grand Potager

Track game series at the Grand Potager 2 / 5 Back to the rest of the discovery day at the Grand Potager. The children focused on drawing reproductions of different elements of the garden, like the keyhole, the mandala, or … Read More

Walk in the Grand Potager park

Track game series at the Grand Potager 1 / 5 At the Grand Potager of Fontenille, 20 children of the Lauris summer camp came to discover the garden’s track game. During an afternoon, the children had a walk through the … Read More

Bee watching at the Grand Potager, Lubéron, France

At the Fontenille domain, the garden is a shelter for many insects: on his own, the garden attracts a huge number of auxiliary insects. Today, as the fist flowers arrived, the children observed bees foraging the garden’s flowers.

Insect house making workshop in Lauris, France

Every wednesday at the Grand Potager in Fontenille children are offered a creative workshop. This week an insect house making workshop took place, which was an opportunity to children and their parents around a do-it-yourself activity under the sun ! … Read More

Construction of a pond at the Grand Potager de Fontenille

A pond has been built by the animation team of the Grand Potager. A new feature of the garden, it is a real refuge for biodiversity: dragonflies, toads, frogs, newts, birds, beetles, etc. These animals will be all the more … Read More

Video- seedling in the Grand Potager of Fontenille

In this video, Emile shows us an example of a beneficial crop combination in the Grand Potager de Fontenille, in the Luberon. Here, the cultivation mound is composed of white onions associated with savoy cabbage. This combination of alliums and … Read More

Seedling in the bioclimatic greenhouse of the Grand Potager

Temperatures are slowly rising in the South and it’s time to plant! Indeed, as the heat will be higher in the greenhouse, it will be an ideal setting to germinate young shoots. So, seedling lines have been drawn in a … Read More

Efficiency assessment of the bioclimatic greenhouse

Feedback on the bioclimatic greenhouse of the Grand Potager de Fontenille, in Luberon, 3 years after its construction. Sebastien Dutherage, its designer, analyses its strong points, and also sheds light on possible improvements.  

Presentation of the Campagnole at the Grand Potager

Emile shows us in video the steps to prepare the raised beds of cultivation. First step: loosening the soil with the Campagnole! The Campagnole is a particularly interesting tool when practicing permaculture in the garden.Invented by Vincent Legris, in collaboration … Read More

Cutting workshop activity at the Grand Potager!

The animation team of the Grand Potager organised this Wednesday afternoon a cutting workshop activity in the garden. The mild temperatures of the last few days and the coming arrival of spring mean that it is currently a good time … Read More

Decoration of the bird boxes at the Grand Potager

After having made the bird boxes that will soon be scattered around the Great Vegetable Garden, the children set about decorating them. To do this, they used materials found in nature such as dead leaves, small branches, moss and flowers. … Read More

Manufacture of bird boxes at the Grand Potager !!

It’s time to install bird boxes in your garden or on the wall of your house if you haven’t already done so! With urbanisation and intensive agriculture, natural nesting boxes (cracks in walls, dead trees, hedges…) are becoming less and … Read More

The Grand Potager under the snow

Snow covered the garden at the beginning of the year, temperatures dropped rapidly this week and the garden was dressed in white. Cold resistant vegetables were planted in the garden in the autumn such as spinach and salad, the snow … Read More

Our Mandala gets ready for winter!

After having welcomed peppers and sweet potatoes for our greatest pleasure, the first frosts had made it look sad… After harvesting the peppers and sweet potatoes, we could proceed to the maintenance of the mandala, beginning with weeding the mounds … Read More

Some news about the herbal spiral of the Grand Potager

At the Grand Potager of Lauris, the Mediterranean climate is favourable to the cultivation of aromatic plants. This is why a spiral of aromatic herbs was developed in the spring of 2019. And it is developing wonderfully well!  This structure, … Read More

The chilli pepper Christmas tree of the Grand Potager

In the garden, winter has arrived with its first frosts. Our mandala was not spared, the sweet potatoes died out on a weekend, and the chilies that kept them company did not survive either… What to do with all the … Read More

Autumn colors at the Grand Potager of Fontenille

The last tomatoes have been harvested in the Grand Potager while the autumn vegetable plants make their appearance on the growing beds. Chard and young mustard shoots develop well. During this season, it is also the occasion to harvest the … Read More

Autumn colors at the Grand Potager of Fontenille

The last tomatoes have been harvested in the Grand Potager while the autumn vegetable plants make their appearance on the growing beds. Chard and young mustard shoots develop well. During this season, it is also the occasion to harvest the … Read More

The hedge of the Grand Potager

Last week we received twenty shrub seedlings at the Grand Potager for the creation of a gourmet hedge. It will have two functions: to produce small fruits and berries for the visitors of the vegetable garden but also to create … Read More

The vegetables of the Grand Potager

Between flowers and vegetables, the harvest was fruitful and colorful at the Grand Potager de Fontenille! We have squashes, eggplants, peppers of all sizes and shapes. Enough to prepare good meals for the coming weeks.

The mandala-compass

For the “treasure hunt” at the Grand Potager, the mandala has been transformed into a “giant compass”. Participants will have to place metal signs indicating the 4 cardinal points at each end of the mandala’s petals. They will also have … Read More

The green wall of the Grand Potager of Fontenille

At the Grand Potager of Fontenille, the volunteers on civic service have laid out part of the covered pergola to create a welcoming space to house creative workshops during discovery visits in the garden. An experimental green wall has been … Read More

Some news of the Grand Potager of Fontenille

New descriptive panels have been installed in the Grand Potager de Fontenille to better accompany and inform visitors as they wander through the garden. In addition, signposts have also been placed in the alleys of the Fontenille estate to facilitate … Read More

The Grand Potager, Labeled

The Grand Potager has become a refuge for birds… Following the establishment of its small bird shelters, it is now a refuge labeled LPO (Ligue de Protéction des oiseaux – Bird Protection League)   Birdhouses

The small watercourse

In order to promote biodiversity in the Grand Potager of the Fontenille area, the bed of a small stream has been cleared to encourage its flow to the vegetable patch. A small pool will thus constitute a new refuge for … Read More

Wild salad tasting

The chef and cooks from gourmet restaurant “Le Champs des Lunes” where invited by the team of the Grand Potager in Fontenille to attend a training of recognition and tasting of  wild salads. This workshop  was organized by Sylvie and … Read More

Treasure Hunt at the Grand Potager

During a school outing, children from Lauris’ school were invited to participate in a treasure hunt through the Grand Potager de Fontenille and its forest paths. Small signs were placed in trees amongst the Domain, presenting different kind of birds, … Read More

Land Art with children

The pupils of the four classes of the nursery school made mandalas with vegetable elements. Those have been found during winter at the Grand Potager in Fontenille. Mandala is a word in Sanskrit language which means circle. In permaculture, the … Read More

Repotting our cuttings

It’s time to repot our small cuttings that have grown… For this,  we were helped by little hands…Each child was able to make their own potting, so we marked their names on their respective potty. Thus, the children will be … Read More

The benefits of the greenhouse

The greenhouse of the Grand Potager du Domaine de Fontenille is a perfect shelter for plants sensitive to the cold, as winter approaches. Autumn seedlings are also growing, and will be transplanted soon in the garden for winter.

Creation of an aromatic spiral at the Grand Potager

It is a spiral wall of stones lined with lean soil and pebbles. Its sunny location, its structure and its components reduce temperature variations, thanks to the accumulation of heat in the stones. The elevated shape also prevents stagnation of … Read More

Many varieties

More than 50 different species of old varieties of tomatoes are grown in the Grand Potager de Fontenille.

Harvests of the Grand Potager

Colorful harvests at the Grand Potager.

Colors to fill the eyes

The diversity of tomatoes in the Grand Potager.

Colors of the garden

The chard with their colored stems bring a touch of color to the Mandala of the Grand Potager of the Domaine de Fontenille.

Frogs and other friends from the Grand Potager

Walking Spider, frog hidden in the foliage of the greenhouse, cicada molting … An organic vegetable garden is a paradise for the garden’s friends, and a shelter for biodiversity.

Flowers and their assets

Mallow flowers, carnations, nasturtiums, pansies … All these flowers bring both colors to the garden, and originality and taste to the dishes prepared by the chef of the Domaine de Fontenille

The wonders of the Grand Potager of the Domaine de Fontenille …

Romain, the gardener in charge of the Grand Potager, is a lover of nature and its diversity. Each corner of the garden is a discovery of incredible foliage, an unknown flower …

Edible flowers

The collection of edible flowers from the vegetable patch includes unexpected specimens … On the program today, an invitation to bite into a flower of chives, nasturtium or borage …

The diversity of the salad

At the Grand Potager de Fontenille, diversity is also in the salad … It is multicolored, with varied flavors and leaves.

Fall in Fontenille – The Mandala

The Mandala of the Grand Potager is still very green. Green beans are about to be harvested, as are carrots and spinach.

Our chicken coop

We welcomed our chickens and their first eggs. An enclosure has been built for them so that they can move around safely.

The bee hives of the Grand Potager

Several hives have been installed in collaboration with a local beekeeper on the Grand Potager de Fontenille. They have been placed on the edge of the wood. They are an asset for biodiversity and pollination in the garden.

Garden of fragrant, aromatic and medicinal plants

A garden of fragrant, aromatic and medicinal plants was set up this spring at the Grand Potager. Drawn according to a geometric plan, it gathers plants generally used for their aromas, their perfume or their medicinal properties. Some plants are … Read More

Messicole plants

Literally, messicole means, who lives in the fields. Thus, these plants are biologically adapted to agricultural land, especially cereal crops. They are also called wildflowers, or meadow plants. Considered by modern agriculture as weeds, the development of chemical treatments and … Read More

Association of aromatic plants

The plants of the perfume, aromatic and medicinal plant garden, are associated in groups of 2 to 4 varieties. In the garden we can find castor, borage and sweet peas grown side by side.  

A garden of fragrant, aromatic and medicinal plants at the Grand Potager

Used for their aroma, culinary taste or medicinal properties, these plants have been cultivated since the Middle Ages. Perfume plants are mainly grown for use in perfumery and cosmetics. Their essence does not always diffuse naturally, and may require some … Read More

First plantations on the keyhole!

Seeldings are placed all around, and mulch is placed to maintain the moisture. The kitchen peels are placed in the center and covered with dry mowing. The keyhole is watered to ease the decomposition process in the center.

Shooting at The Grand Potager

A team of French television channel TF1 came to shoot at the Grand Potager of Fontenille in the presence of the children of the village of Lauris. Below Jerome Faure, the chef of the Domaine de Fontenille, in the presence … Read More

Keyhole preparation

This video shows how to prepare a key hole, using permaculture methods.  

Bioclimatic greenhouse

Sebastien Dutherage, head of the Association for the Promotion of Ecological Techniques (APTE) presents the concept of a bioclimatic greenhouse made with the support of The Ivory Foundation on le Grand Potager de Fontenille in Lauris, in the South of … Read More

Discover the flavors of the garden

A visit was organized for the children of the Lauris school on the Grand Potager de Fontenille. At this occasion, the chef of Domaine de Fontenille, Jérôme Faure, visited the grown plots with the children, to make them taste the … Read More

Children’s visit

25 children from Lauris school visited le Grand Potager de Fontenille. Le Grand Potager, will start its pedagogical vocation, now that the garden is operational. the children visited the various centers of interest of the garden in groups of 5, … Read More

The bioclimatic greenhouse of the Grand Potager

The bioclimatic greenhouse of the Grand Potager is ready for its first seedlings! Funded by The Ivory Foundation, this experimental greenhouse was designed with the expertise of the association APTE (promotion of eco-energies, ecoconstruction and ecological practices), and carried out … Read More

The donkeys of the Grand Potager

The donkeys of the Grand Potager du Domaine de Fontenille contribute to the fertility of the garden soil. They produce a local and natural manure transformed into the composting area of the garden. On other farms, in permaculture, such as … Read More

The crushing roller

It is used to stop the growth of green manures sown on plots at rest. The action of this roller is to stop the sap flow of plants and leave a mulch on the ground. The cutting blades break the … Read More

Autumn at Le Grand Potager

Autumn is mild, the gardening boards are still green with salads, cabbage, spinach. Soon, the bioclimatic greenhouse will take over for the production of the plants, to gain a few weeks on the season.

La Campagnole

La Campagnole is a tool created by La Fabriculture, a workshop of handcrafted tools based in the south of France. ( It is inspired by “the grelinette”, a basic tool of permaculture, a spade with about ten teeth, up to … Read More

Construction of the keyhole

This Keyhole was made of douglas pine and metal. The metal structure maintain the vertical boards durably, like the strapping of a wine barrel. Once the structure is assembled, the interior is covered with geotextile, to retain the soil, and … Read More

Le Grand Potager – Setting up the Mandala

As the autumn settles in the Grand Potager, the central part is being transformed … A mandala composed of 12 petal-shaped raised-beds around a tree of Judea appears on the ground. Traced using ropes and wooden sticks, the petals are … Read More

Le Grand Potager – Summer at the garden

Some photos of the Grand Potager …

Grand Potager – The Pergola

To facilitate the circulation and visits of the garden, a pergola was set up on the central alley. Beyond the aesthetic aspect, this pergola brings two advantages to the garden: – On both sides of this pergola, climbing fruit trees … Read More

Grand Potager – First strawberries from the garden

Several strawberry varieties have been planted on the Grand Potager, as well as berries (raspberries, blackcurrants, currants, blackberries …)

Grand Potager – First culture beds

After preparing the ground during winter, the first culture beds of the Grand Potager were set up in the spring of 2017. Below, tomatoes’ seedlings, planted in a square, with a system of tipi-shaped tutor, and several varieties of lettuce … Read More

Grand Potager – Preparation of the soil

Prior to cultivating a bed, we reduce the presence of weeds thanks to the method of occultation. This technique consists of watering the soil and then covering it with a dark plastic sheet. Thus unwanted seeds will tend to germinate … Read More

Grand Potager – Planting aromatics

Along the pergola, mint, melissa, and other aromatic plants.

Grand Potager – Setting up the composting area

A composting area of 20 meters long has been set up on the Grand Potager, in order to upgrade green waste and create compartments for the storage of elements in different stages of maturation, as well as to allow them … Read More

Grand Potager – Designing a bioclimatic greenhouse

The greenhouse will be a major element of the “Grand Potager” of Fontenille. A greenhouse that combines a modern and luminous aesthetic with the innovative concepts of the bioclimatic greenhouse, using natural and local materials. The operating principles of this … Read More