There a good article over at the New York Times about Piet Oudolf. The writer tours his Hummelo garden in winter and notes his love of the look of perennials that have died away - the shapes and forms of seedheads and dried foliage.
This quote from the article is good summing up of Oudolf's garden style:
"He's gotten away from the soft pornography of the flower," said Charles Waldheim, the director of the landscape architecture program at the University of Toronto. "He's interested in the life cycle, how plant material ages over the course of the year," and how it relates to the plants around it. Like a good marriage, his compositions must work well together as its members age.
Oudolf is quoted, saying:
"When I started, 35 years ago, everything was focused on the traditional English garden. It was all flower and color. It was dogmatic — deadheading, staking. I got a bit tired of that."
The lack of fussiness, tossing out high maintenance deadheading and staking, combining grasses with naturalistic perennials - these are all the qualities that drew me to his style, which happens to be tailor-made for country gardens.
I once had the pleasure of interviewing Piet Oudolf for an article in Gardening Life magazine. This page on at my web site is an adaptation of that article.
© Yvonne Cunnington, Country Gardener