The University Gardens
The Collections

Blondehuset garden

The historical garden and house "Blondehuset"

The house was refurbished in 1999, at which time we decided to return to the original colours used on the house in the late 1800s and to use the garden to show plants grown in western Norway before 1900.

We have delved into the archives (pictures, sales catalogues, records, drawings, etc.) to find original plant species and varieties from the period 1850-1900. In some cases it has been impossible to find exactly the right old varieties, in which case we have had to use newer, similar ones (eg Georgians; most we have are from 1910-1940). We have added to these the collection of plants from old gardens of western Norway, kept to preserve the older surviving cultivars that are well adapted to the climate here (the genetic resources collection).

All the summer flowering species that we show here could have been found in a garden in western Norway before 1900. Surprisingly many of the same old varieties that came into the market in the 19th century and earlier are still on the market today, but a few of our varieties are new plants that look like the old.

Few such gardens were as species-rich as this one, but we have chosen to show as much as possible of the diversity of the time. The plants are displayed with signs (in Norwegian) with information about their names, origins and uses.