I often pass this gated area just beyond the main entrance of Jardin des Plantes on my way to another area of the garden, and only ever stop to photograph the sculptures inside, always wishing I could jump the fence to get a better angle. I've never known it to be accessible to the public, until the other day when surprisingly two square gates, normally locked and sealed with a padlock, were wide open. I looked around to see if the jardinieres were momentarily inside watering the plants or tilling the grounds... but there was no one working on the flora at all, just a young man walking under the trellises, admiring the roses.
Roses! A jungle of roses that were never there on my previous visits. I stepped inside with a fluttering heart. And although I overheard someone say most of the blooms had already passed their peak, I couldn't disagree more. And so I spent the better half of the morning slowly taking in the 170 varieties of European roses.
Do visit if you can... but take heart, as soon as you begin to leave, the fragrance of a thousand roses pulls you back in, inviting you to remain one minute more, then another, followed by another...