Landscapes in Landscapes - Piet Oudolph

"He's gotten away from the soft pornography of the flower"  (Charles Waldheim  New York Times January 31 2008)  Endpage P Oudolf N Kingsbury Landscapes in Landscapes  The Monacelli Press 2010
When I got home the other day from work, this book was waiting for me.  I have been a fan of Piet Oudolf for many years and own several of his books/collaborations with Noel Kingsbury.  I have always found these books highly informative and beautifully photographed.

This book is very different to the others that I own.  It is a large paperback for a start, almost too large to be a paperback and I wonder how long it will last.  It not a cheap book either, though thankfully via the internet available for less than the £45 RRP.  The price however is an indication of the quality of the contents of this book.  It is worth every penny as I know I will return to it again and again.

The book contains plans and planting schemes with the plants detailed that have been used.
Some of the writing is very small on the plans, but it is worth squinting at and try to decipher what it says. 

The book is not arranged in what I would call traditional chapters, but there is a section per garden and the title is the square metreage of the garden.  If you have spatial awareness then this is a very useful thing as you can judge it as a real space in your mind.  If, however, you are like me and see the world in a vague sort of 'ish' way, then this is less helpful.  Good idea though.

The photographs in the book are stunning.  Some are double page spreads and some are pull-out double sided pages with photos one side and planting plan the other.
Some of the photographs have these colour bars down the side, labelling the colour with the corresponding plant.  This is a fantastic device, it works so well.

If you are an Oudolf fan I defy you to read this book and not come away excited and inspired.

If you are not an Oudolf fan, then it might be of an expensive start to realising what an incredible designer he is, but believe me it is worth it.

If however, you are not a fan of the naturalistic, prairie type planting that Oudolf excels at, then don't buy it, it will make you cross.

To finish where I started, this book is indeed not soft pornography of flowers, it is hard core, in your face, sexual promiscuity of planting.


  1. I have his other books and would love to visit his garden but £45. It would have to be awfully good...maybe the loval library have the money to buy it...

  2. I have long been a fan, can't wait to get my hands on a copy of this book! Thanks for flagging it.

  3. Thanks for your comments. It is a bit pricey, but will probably come down in price fairly soon. It is wonderful though, I just enjoyed it so much.


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