The sweet scent of jazzmine, a “gift from the Gods”, will lure you in to the Garden of La Marquesa de Arucas, to delve into on your own, among an enormous array of plants. You are not actually on your own, however, as you will be accompanied by a peculiar parade of resident peacocks. These are the real owners, who are there to brighten up the place with a host of courtships, colours and sinuous movements. This is the prelude to an enjoyable walk around an area covered with vegetation from all over the world.
500 plant species from all 5 continents await you as you walk around. Together they make up quite an usual sight, bursting through the waves of banana plantations, typical of the monoculture of the area.
The Garden of La Marquesa is set at the foot of the Montaña de Arucas, and has become a blaze of colour thanks to the sediments that trickle down the hillside with the rain. All plant types bloom and spread here with the minimum fuss. You are sure to come across a beautiful 200 year old Dragon tree that is indigenous to the Canaries, as well as a huge, magnificent Ficus tree.
The neoclassic façade of the building adds a touch of distinction to the area. The gardens began to spring up around 1880 when Don Ramón Madam y Uriondo, the first Marquiss of Arucas, began planting out all around his summer palace.
So here we are two centuries later, at the gate of quite an unusual garden. It is a fine display of natural beauty, one of the many such gardens tucked away all over the island. It is a present, a reminder of earlier times.