European landscapers are hard work, says Piet Oudolf

Dutch plantsman and designer Piet Oudolf finds the US easier to work in than Europe, he told an audience at the Garden Museum last week.

"In America they will try out new things and work till two or three in the night to get it done," he said. "Here, people prefer the familiar."

The re-landscaping of Trentham Estate, where Oudolf worked with landscaper Tom Stuart-Smith, "took ten years," he said. "And Germany is very difficult due to the bureaucracy - there is no flexibility."

Oudolf is currently working on New York's High Line project to landscape a 2.3km section of disused elevated railway. "The secret is to repeat the planting," he said. "With 18-inch (45cm) soil depth, it's basically a roof garden."

A retrospective of Oudolf's work continues at the Garden Museum until February.


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