In contrast to the neatly trimmed blocks of matching trees in the Jardin du Luxembourg, the trees in Parc Monceau are individuals with character. Specimen trees have been allowed to develop their natural form over decades and centuries. This plane tree (listed in the national register of remarkable trees) was planted in 1814.
Some isolated trees, like this copper beech, have developed a perfectly balanced canopy.
Some, overshadowed by neighbours in their formative years, lean and stretch towards the light.
Others, like this Lawson cypress, seem to lean down to welcome visitors…
As the days get warmer more people seek a shady place to rest or picnic in the park but even those who choose a sunny spot often settle close to a tree. Trees are good company.
The people of Paris benefit from this parc à l’anglaise today thanks to the ambitions of the eighteenth century Duke de Chartres. When the duke first opened his private pleasure ground in 1779 the trees, planted in the newly fashionable informal style, were subsidiary to the many statues, eye-catchers and artificial ruins in various styles. Some of the ornamental features are still there but the trees (and the people of Paris) have long since taken over.
My 2015 post on this park here includes some more history and artists’ views of the park.