The Garden Guide

Book: C.M Villiers Stuart Gardens of the Great Mughals
Chapter: Chapter 10 How the Lotus of the Good Law went a-voyaging

Approach to Pinjore

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A hundred yards below the village the road to the gardens turns off over a little bridge. It must be confessed that the approach is tame and disappointing compared with that of the great Kashmir gardens or the royal gardens of the plains. Outside the walls, an open space with a round grass plot and some meaningless small flower-beds spoils the effect-an unhappy reminder of the usual Anglo-Indian garden with its drive and 'gravel sweep,' so beloved of landscape-gardening days. My heart sank as I drove through it, and I prepared myself for disappointment at Pinjor. But the huge wall with its fine arched gateway was reassuring, and masses of purple bougainvillaea fell in brilliant festoons of welcome over the glittering whitewashed surface of the entrance buildings. Through the main gateway the path leads on to a square stone platform, raised five steps above the garden and ornamented on three sides with seats built into the low brick and plaster wall. Here two fine old mango trees with spreading gnarled arms cast a dense shade even in the hot morning sunshine; and at the level of the platform broad walks lead off, left and right, under the high castellated walls to the corner towers. Below stretches the first terrace of the upper garden; for at Pinjor the usual Mughal plan is reversed, and the principal entrance faces down instead of up the main canal.