Like a flower breaking through the asphalt, the green space that is Plein Air has sprung up unexpectedly between the apartment blocks in the 20th arrondissement of Paris. Long dreamed of, then brought to life in 2017 by the expert hands of Masami Charlotte Lavault, this flower farm is the first to see the light of day in the megalopolis. The project of a lifetime for this enthusiast who has trained all over the world in the innovative biodynamic method of floriculture. Africa, Asia: the former industrial designer-turned-grower scoured the continents in search of lessons in line with her values. Several years of learning about the world of plants and nature abroad are now reflected in a 1200m2 field in Paris. On this plot of land, the flower grower – formerly accompanied by her last partner Anna Bauer – produces hundreds of species of flowers, all of which are grown seasonally. Because here, we only cultivate what grows in the course of each month! An anthology of plant types that brings the pinnacle of French production up to date. So many plants, all carefully collected by Masami, make up the wealth of Plein Air. Ecologically sound treatment of the soil with a system of bacteria used as probiotics, distribution via a short supply chain to local florists: from cultivation to harvesting, right up to the arrival of the produce on the shelves, the entrepreneur is breathing new life into the profession, something which many welcome with pleasure. Starting with the happy neighbours who live surrounding the field. Constantly driven by the desire to discover new species of plants and to pass on their secrets during workshops held on the farm, the founder of Plein Air is noted for her taste for passing on her knowledge. A new player in the world of floriculture who is successfully shaking up a polluting industry that is struggling to question itself.
40 rue du Télégraphe, 75020 Paris. Guided tour of the flower farm and outdoor workshop programme. Find all the information on their website www.pleinair.paris
Photographies : Valerio Geraci – Text : Juliette Bruneau @thesocialitefamily
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