Gardens under glass
Step inside a greenhouse and you can find tropical plants thriving in places with six-month-long winters and desert florae growing sturdily in cities where it rains every day. More-utilitarian greenhouses give farmers and gardeners a head start on growing season. That may be their most important job, but it is the ornate public conservatories, built from the Victorian era onward, that capture the imagination.
Indoor gardens from the 19th century are still popular today, and new greenhouses are being built, some with modern architecture and others that faithfully recreate the look and feel of their 1800s predecessors. As long as people still think there is something magical about stepping out of their everyday surroundings and into an exotic natural world, greenhouses will be in vogue.
Here are 10 of the most attractive public conservatories in the world.