Orange groves

Text Size

Current Size: 100%

Printer-friendly version
"Iero, amoundaut, verdo e flourido / Coume un jardin dis Esperido / Iero fugis, emé si coutau adrechous / E sis arange e si miougrano..."

“Up there, Hyères, green and blooming / like an Esperides garden / Hyères is a fruit whose hillsides face full South / An orange; a pomegranate…”

 

The poet Frederic Mistral mentions for the first time the orange groves so characteristic of Hyères in these 1867 verses. Already then, the town was as famous for its palm trees as for its oranges!

 

Winter bloom

It is forbidden to collect oranges in the city centre.

People have grown citrus in Provence ever since the 14th century. Known for its warm and sunny climate, Hyères became an important producer of oranges that grew in the city gardens and the surrounding hills. Along with orange flowers and lemons, oranges were usually collected before they reached full ripeness and shipped from Giens to the rest of France. A series of cold winters, the growing Spanish competition and the development of a palm tree production led to the decline of Hyères’ commercial production of oranges. Nevertheless, the image of orange groves blooming in the midst of winter stayed with many illustrious visitors to the city (Diane de Vichy, Schopenhauer, Millin, etc.)

 

Still today, orange trees sprout throughout the city…ringing like a tribute to the South and a reminder that, even in the heart of winter, spring is just around the corner.

  • Français
  • English
  • Deutsch
  • Italiano