The Iris of Provence, une beautiful story

In Provence, an elegant flower with white, yellow and purple petals dots gardens in May. The iris, with its majestic bearing and its powerful colors, handsomely heralds the spring. In Hyères, the Anffoso family has been cultivating it for over two generations.
By Caroline Taret

Let’s head for Hyères to crack the secret of the iris. In this pretty Provençale beach resort facing the fabulous Port Cros and Porquerolles islands, Pierre and Monique Anfosso have been growing this flower since the 1970’s. The iris, renowned as much for its delicate perfume as for its medicinal properties, grows wild in the Sainte-Baume forest in the Camargue, but in the Anfosso family’s nursery, new varieties have been created for over 40 years. This plant with its sophisticated appearance has a history intimately linked to Provence. It inspired Vincent Van Gogh during his stay in Saint-Rémy de Provence to create one of the most famous paintings in the history of art. During his hospitalization at the Monastère Saint-Paul de Mausole asylum Vincent discovered irises in the garden: their gentle swaying in the wind as well as their nuances of color inspired the anxious painter to capture the beauty of nature. He succeeded, and the Anfosso family continues this work with flair.

Discover

Port-Cros

A protected island facing Hyères, its flora and fauna have made Port-Cros a national park.

Giens

This magnificent protected peninsula located just next to Hyères is a hideout for lovers of wild nature in the heart of the Mediterranean.

Porquerolles

The biggest of the islands opposite Hyères, Porquerolles is ideal for a walk with all the family, which might take you right up to the semaphore.

Villa Noailles

A villa built by architect Robert Mallet-Stevens following a commission from patrons Charles and Marie-Laure de Noailles, La Villa Noailles is a center for culture, fashion and design in Provence.

Latest articles

10 easy rituals to help you relax at work

10 easy rituals to help you relax at work

From daily tasks to big challenges, there are plenty of stress factors when it comes to work. L'Occitane reveals some simple habits, performed in 5 minutes at your desk, designed to help you to stay calm in any situation.
Back to the source: Provençal vegetable tian

Back to the source: Provençal vegetable tian

Warm weather is here, and with it comes the taste of sun-drenched vegetables. Taking its name from the earthenware dish traditionally used for baking it, the tian's blend of aubergine, tomatoes and courgette is bursting with the flavours of the South of France. A delightful dish!
5 essential beauty steps after sport

5 essential beauty steps after sport

Vital for a balanced lifestyle, practicing a sport activity means adopting a specific beauty routine after each session. Discover these simple habits to adopt after exercise.