A Paradise of Rare Plants

It is a widely known fact that good vines grow on the German Wine Route and in Deidesheim. However, it is rather surprising for most people when they hear that there are also blooming and ripening lemons in this vacation region and that the fig trees are literally bursting with fruit.

It would seem then, that this is just a place that nature has been especially kind to. While the Palatinate Forest, the largest connected forest area of Germany, shelters the region from the westerly winds, well-known appellations such as “Herrgottsacker” or “Paradiesgarten” reduce the cold northerly winds of the spring. Therefore, based on the yearly average, Deidesheim is one of the warmest places of Germany. Of course this Mediterranean climate also has an effect on the appearance of the wineries’ gardens in Deidesheim. They feature an almost heavenly variety of Mediterranean plants, which have been thriving here for centuries. As most of these gardens are not always open to public, the idea of creating a “Mediterranean Hill” came up. Here, the visitors and residents alike can peacefully enjoy the variety of the brilliant display of Mediterranean plants.

At the 1983 International Garden Festival (IGA) in Munich, I just had to take advantage of an unexpected opportunity. As a large number of the exhibited plants wouldn’t have survived a winter in Munich, the people in charge agreed by handshake to give their precious and well-kept plants to Deidesheim.

Therefore, in the fall of 1983, hundreds of bitter oranges, mandarins, oranges, lemons, kiwis, pomegranates, cactuses, bougainvilleas and other exquisite plants were transported from the Bavarian capital to Deidesheim by truck. A number of bottles of good wine from Deidesheim were left in Munich, symbolically returning the favor.

In the meantime, the Mediterranean Hill has become an attraction and popular destination for botanical tours in summer.

Tip: You can get the Botanical Guide of Deidesheim at the Tourist-Information for 5 EUR. It offers intersting information about the variety of plants in Deidesheim and at the German Wine Route.


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