Conservatoire et Jardin botaniques de la Ville de Genève
The Temperate House
The symbol of our institute, this big glass dome is noticeable to all the users of the national highway which passes nearby. It houses plants from different regions of the globe, which are divided into five geographical zones: America, Asia, Australia and two zones specifically for the succulent plants of Africa and America. These two zones are situated opposite each other and allow visitors to compare, at their leisure, the morphological convergence of succulent plants from the two continents.
An eight meter high circular gallery invites the public to experience these plants, as well as those to be seen outside the greenhouse, from a different view point. One can look out over the cacti, the tree ferns, have a birds-eye-view of the Cycad foliage and find oneself `nose to nose` with the crown of a Washingtonia.
During the winter season several large potted trees are sheltered in the centre of the greenhouse. Among them some very old palms (Chamaerops humilis), and a two hundred-year-old Podocarpus, which is one of the last examples of plants that were transferred here from the original site of the Botanical Garden at the beginning of the 20th century. This arboreal heritage, which passes from generation to generation, is precious and makes you think of the bonsais which the Japanese hand down from father to son. Their presence on the terrace of the Winter Garden in the summer adds an exotic note opposite the majestic presence of nearly three hundred year old Plane trees of "la grande allée."