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The Languedoc has quite an extreme climate with hot summers and cool winters.
At the southern extremity of France and backed by mountains it is both the hottest region of France but can also be cold in the winter with strong winds.
Sometimes, it feels like the seasons have jumped directly from winter to summer, with no middle-ground in between.
Happily, there is not much of the soggy drizzle and grey skies endured by much of northern Europe. Indeed, one of the best features of the area are the big skies, which for much of the year are clear, thanks to the relatively dry climate.
Of course, this bears an influence upon the plants that grow here both naturally and in a garden. When planting, we carefully choose plants for the site, taking into consideration the environment it offers the plant, such as shelter, rainfall, sunny exposure. We chose plants that will not just tolerate the growing conditions, but that will thrive in such an environment.
Obviously, there are times when climatic conditions are exceptional such as the winter of 2012, when the whole of Europe shivered. At such times in more exposed sites, some ornamental trees may not survive. When planting a garden, we always advise clients of the hardiness of such plants and the suitability for the garden in question.
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Languedoc Gardening Index:
Environment and Ecology
Local Authority Liaison
Scale / Size
Terrain / Topography
Below: Autumn can vary; often October can bring gorgeous colour to the region as the vines turn different hews and one can enjoy clear, warm days into November. Other years, the climate turns cool and wet after the grape harvest in September.
Below: Summer mostly brings a long spell of hot, sunny weather, when swimming in clear waters becomes a must. Occasionally the heat can build up to dramatic electric storms. If the weather becomes windy, forest fires can occur (they are usually man-made); The Pompiers are on high alert at these times. But, for the most part, summer is a glorious time when nature reigns.
Left: The large number of windmills - both old and new - are a good indication of the region's climate. For centuries, wind power was harnessed for the milling of both grain and olives. On the coast, salt has been produced since Roman times thanks to the combined influences of heat and wind upon the shallow coastal lagoons.
The Four Seasons:
Below: Spring is usually cool-to-mild, though spells of warm sunny days are not unusual. It is often the wettest time of the year, the rain being essential to replenish ground water and to carry plants and crops through the hot summer months
Below: Winter is usually mild to cool. Some years there is a dusting of snow. Equally, it is not unusual to enjoy, clear, warm weather in February or March, when wearing shorts is the order of the day.
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