5935 BJ Steyl
T. 077 - 321 00 12
Welcome to Jochumhof.
Hidden behind old walls, in Steyl, theloveliest monastic village in the Netherlands, lies the Jochum-garden, a peaceful enclave of nature and history with a magnificent view of the river Maas.
Discover this Botanical Garden; explore its unique collection of age-old and exotic trees, shrubs and perennials.
Come and see our Theehuis (Grandcafe), which has shelves from a 1880 grocery shop, chairs from an old Limburg pub and tables from India and caters for parties and individual visitors.
Outside, too, there are several paved areas where you can enjoy coffee or tea with Limburg ‘vlaai’ (fruitflan) or homemade savoury dishes.
The Botanical Garden has a long history; the oldest plants of the garden date from 1799, when there was a rich estate here with a wooded park (e.g. Liriodendron tulipafera), now called Paterspark.
In 1933 Father Peter Jochum started teaching biology to the novices of the monastery of the Societas Verbum Dei who had bought several estates in Steyl. He planted exotic seeds that its missionaries brought back from all over the world (Sequoiadendron giganteum).
In 1934 he made an Alpentuin (Alpine garden) with dwarf species of trees and ‘mountains’ of boulders from the river.
In the 1960s he made a Tropenkas (tropical hothouse) out of a gardener’s glasshouse.
Since 1998 sub-tropical plants and succulents have grown there and it was named Mediterrane Kas.
An old farmhouse was turned into a Documentatiecentrum (library, lectureroom, kitchen, toilets) that is now the Grandcafe.
In the 1970s the monastery didn’t need the garden any more. Father Jochum’s work was transferred to a Foundation, which was named Jochumhof in his honour and continued to receive lots of students and visitors.
An educational Heemtuin (indigenous plants from the north of Limburg) and Kruidentuin (Medicinal and Kitchen Herbs) were layed out, followed by a Tiglientuin (a pond with plants that grew here in the prehistoric Tiglien-age, over 2 million years ago). Animal and plant-fossils from the clay-pits of the famous Tegelen ceramic industries had been studied and they proved that there had been a relatively warm climate here with a giant species of deer, small hairy mammoths, rhinos, monkeys, hyenas and plants that only survived the ice ages in more southern parts of the continent, like the Caucasus (Pterocarya).
The garden is kept by some 40 unpaid gardeners and technical workers from the area, who also added and renovated a Rotstuin (rock-garden) in the Alpentuin, a swamp with insect-eating plants, Japanese/Chinese corner, Bamboo-cornerborders, American prairie, African succulents (in the hothouse), Roses-, Hydrangea- and Helleborus-borders, and a Geurtuin (scent-garden).
They also write information for individual visitors and give guided tours for groups and sell Cactus-species.
The Botanical Garden is open from April-October; Tue-Sun, 11am-5pm.
Fee is € 3,-