From farm to tourist attraction
The turning point
It was an article published in the local newspaper that changed everything: in the summer of 1993, the Reynier family received numerous calls from people who wanted to come and see their garden. All of them were delighted with their visit.
That’s when an idea took seed in their minds: “What if we open the garden to the public?”
For Frédéric, who wanted to start a nursery, the timing was perfect.
In early 1994, expansion work began, with the goal of doubling the size of the garden.
In the spring, the Giroussens pottery market gave the family the ideal opportunity to announce the opening, and the first visitors set foot on the young lawns at the end of April. The Jardins des Martels gardens are born.
A promising start for the gardens
Spurred on by the enthusiasm of their visitors, the Reyniers launched into new developments: they turned a building into an exotic greenhouse, created a mini farm in an area where ducks used to be kept, and planted brightly-coloured flowerbeds in an area of undergrowth.
Their success was immediate, and only grew from there: 3,000 people visited the gardens in the first year, 15,000 the following year, 23,000 in 1996, rising to 35,000 in 1997... The place’s reputation quickly spread beyond the borders of the Tarn region!