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Since the origin of mankind, cut flowers and gardens have held a considerable place. Do not we speak of the "Garden of Eden" as the first home of mankind?

In classical times, cut flowers were widely used and the art of floral decoration already existed. As for gardens, one has only to remember the Hanging Gardens of Babylon to understand their historical importance.

But how did these arts develop in Frenchspeaking Switzerland, subject of the present work? It was during the Renaissance that the art of the garden and bouquets became important again, after a long medieval period that completely stifled it. Besides, this period saw all the arts develop under the aegis of kings and great erudite and passionate men. Thus, throughout the history were born the famous French gardens and, the most famous of them, that of the Palace of Versailles.

This culture of the French-style art of living initiated during the Renaissance and continues to influence us nowadays. Thus, in the field of the art of the garden, Georges Boccard, French decorator architect, settled as a nurseryman in Geneva in 1862, having a great experience of gardens in the south of France and in Austria. He will then initiate the movement with his two sons, Auguste and Jean, movement that developed progressively thanks to other nurserymen, horticulturists and seed sellers in French-speaking Switzerland, as the Balsiger house, successor of Schyr, founded in 1903 in Tour de Peilz.

As for the floral art, the origin remains vaguer, but the oldest house in this domain, the Hertig house in Friborg, began its activity in 1851 as a horticulturist and seed merchant. Jean Hertig, its founder, created one of the first flower gardens in the city, the "Hertig Gardens", nowadays named the "Lucien-Nussbaumer Public Gardens".

Du to his passion, the floral art is reflected throughout the long career of his company, whose fifth generation still perpetuates the traditions.

In this special issue, we wish to pay tribute to their history and their passion, which transcend the centuries and allow us today to enjoy magnificent floral and landscape creations.

Throughout this work, you will discover passionate and fascinating houses whose history and profession are worth discovering. Houses corresponding in spirit to the values of excellence the guild VIPServices and this magazine stand for.

Wishing you a wonderful discovery of this issue.


Pierre-André Dumont de Cuisery

Publishing Director

Cover Page from n°17