Without diligent gardener’s hands, a garden will find it difficult to thrive and may even prove a failure soon. It gets overgrown with bush and trees and simply disappears, the same as we can see numerous traces of the ancestral cultural landscape disappearing in the Trenta Valley … The very first gardeners in Juliana were Anton Tožbar (29 May 1905 – 3 February 1993), the grandson of the man known as Bear’s Death (have a look at the votive tablet in the parking lot along the main road, dedicated to the grandfather of the first gardener), and Ančka Kavs (28 December 1907 – 6 March 2000) from the hamlet of Vrsnik near the Soča village. Albert Bois de Chesne sent Anton Tožbar to Padua in Italy to study gardening there. Together with unassuming Ančka, Tožbar then took care of the garden with great care, even during the period when the garden was no longer accessible to its founder. After their retirement, Anton Tožbar’s daughter Marija Anica Završnik (born on 28 April 1948) and his son-in-law Jože Završnik (24 April 1946–3 November 2005) from Dobrovlje in distant Styria, agreed to take over the management of Juliana. They both literally dedicated their lives to it. Marija officially worked in the garden for no less than fifty years.

Today, the garden is cared for by Klemen Završnik, B.Sc. in Agriculture and Horticulture, and Martina Tekavec, B.Sc. in Restoration and Conservation Biologist. From May to September, when the garden is open to the public, they are always available to visitors for questions as well as the exchange of experiences.

Listen to the dwarf Zois


Concept: Klemen Završnik, Martina Tekavec
Text: Klemen Završnik
Photo: arhiv družine Bois de Chesne, Tone Wraber, Klemen Završnik
Drawings: Samo Jenčič (škrat Cojzek) in Carl Huck (Zlatorog)
Voice: Teja Malovrh Cigale
Reviewer: Špela Pungaršek
Language Editor: Henrik Ciglič
Sound editing: David Kunc

Slovenian Museum of Natural History, 2021

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