Garden historians inevitably invoke representations of gardens - photographs, paintings, drawings, engravings, plans, design sketches, etc. - for their work; but they rarely ask how the specific form of their evidence shapes it (and therefore their conclusions about it), how the specific garden - either proposed or already established - is mediated metamorphosed, by its presentation. Given the current concern as to whether landscape architecture has adequately responded to the challenge of modernism, to ignore the graphic language of garden (re)presentations and its relationship to actual finished designs is to deny oneself as historian/theoretician a fundamental piece of evidence. Using some earlier twentieth examples of post-impressionist, are nouveau, cubist and constructivist garden designs to illustrate both the thesis and the methodology of this analysis, this contribution will mainly focus upon gardens in the advertising of the last quarter century. A medium where we expect to be manipulated is the ideal testing ground for an enquiry into the ideological assumptions about gardens that are available today to both consumers (gardeners) and their suppliers (whether these are elitist landscape architects or the do-it-yourself prescriptions of commercial garden centres). It will be shown that the range of popular ideas about gardens generaUy is exceptionally limited. In comparison with the literature on gardens available outside these media especially the enquiries by geographers ecologists, even poets - the gardens of advertising, which we may take as representative of a widely held view of them, suggest by the paucity of their ideology one dramatic reason why modernist landscape architecture has failed to grapple with the traditional challenge of gardens to produce a rich and complex environmental arena for living. In contrast to the garden imagery of modern advertising can be opposed the designs of those whose philosophy is precisely to exploit the fullest range of ideas about gardens: where site is metamorphosed into both sight and insight, where genius loci is - as traditionally it always has been - a complex result of the intersection of subject and object. This will be illustrated by the work of two contemporary European designers, Ian Hamilton Finlay and Bernard Lassus.