Ah, le jardin à la française. No need to add the word formal to that phrase, because when it comes to French gardens, formal is a given. We've all seen Versailles (in photos, if not in person), and we know that its grand sense of ceremony—all those espaliered fruit trees, symmetrical flower beds, and razor-edged paths radiating outward from fountains—reflects 17th-century taste. A king's taste, that is. Whatever Louis XIV liked in a garden, landscape architect André Le Nôtre made sure he got.
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