I know a bank where the wild thyme blows,
Where oxlips and the nodding violet grows,
Quite over-canopied with luscious woodbine,
With sweet musk-roses and with eglantine:
There sleeps Titania sometime of the night,
Lull’d in these flowers with dances and delight;
And there the snake throws her enamell’d skin,
Weed wide enough to wrap a fairy in...
~ W. Shakespeare from "A Midsummer Night's Dream"
The most enchanting garden one will ever lay their eyes upon in the Philippines is Sonya's Garden located in Tagaytay, which is roughly a 2-hour drive heading south from Manila. I had heard about this place that will transport you to a Shakespearean soliloquy in "A Midsummer Night's Dream" in years past but have only been graced with time and good company to visit it 3 days ago. It's a very well kept secret garden, truly verdant with blooming flowers and shrubbery all year round. The garden is also fecund with vegetables, herbs and fruit-bearing trees which are served at their organic restaurant and just the thought of that is quite exultant. Kudos to the owner, all gardeners, caretakers and horticulturists because the wonder they have achieved here is worthy to dwell in the annals of the history of Philippine gardens.
The cabanas decorated with lace, flower-patterned sheets and embroidery of sorts found all around the garden property are romantic and I will say, this whole reservation is capable of surpassing the botanical gardens I've been to in some cities outside the Philippines.
Planting and landscaping began in 1998 at Sonya's Garden and as one may expect, all shrubberies, trees and flowering plants have taken root making the organic flow and growth of all manner of flora a marvelous sight to imbibe.
Herewith is a photo of their house salad served at their conservatory restaurant area:
Varieties of Morning Glorys, Hibisuses, Impatiences, Hydrangeas, Butterfly Peas, Geranium flower varieties, Mums and many, many others hang or lay about everywhere.
Aside from the luscious garden itself, the property houses a bakery with their artisanal boulangerie items; an apothecary where lotions, spices, oils, candles are sold, a gift shop, the restaurant I mentioned earlier and a bed and breakfast.
Visit the place if you are able, it will be an experience.