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Planting: A New Perspective

By Piet Oudolf and Noel Kingsbury

Indispensable. ... An impassioned plea for packing beds tightly, interlacing species lightly, choosing plants that survive multiple stresses, [and] letting seed heads stand through winter.

New York Times Book Review

Planting: A New Perspective is an essential resource for designers and gardeners looking to create plant-rich, beautiful gardens that support biodiversity and nourish the human spirit. An intimate knowledge of plants is essential to the success of modern landscape design, and Planting makes Oudolf’s considerable understanding of plant ecology and performance accessible, explaining how plants behave in different situations, what goes on underground, and which species make good neighbors. Extensive plant charts and planting plans will help you choose plants for their structure, color, and texture as well as the way they perform in the landscape. A detailed directory with details like each plant’s life expectancy, the persistence of its seedheads, its tendency to spread, and propensity to self-seed, this book is a beautiful and invaluable resource.

Media reviews

"A wonderful primer for the home garden."

Chicago Tribune

"This is a how-to book that will leave you with the information, courage, and enthusiasm to approach your own landscape in a new way. ... The authors leave no doubt about the importance of natural beauty to human life, and they show how to reproduce aspects of it successfully."

—Malinda Hatch, Landscape Architecture

"A fascinating and technical exposition of how Piet has changed the way plants are used."

—Mary Keen, Daily Telegraph (London)

"It treads a well-pitched line in providing gritty information to the professional and the amateur alike. ... It is fascinating to see this pinnacle of public naturalistic planting explained and contextualized."

The Guardian

"A fascinating insight into Piet Oudolf's approach to design."

—Rory DuSoir, Gardens Illustrated

"A great guide for anyone wishing to try out the style Piet Oudolf uses in his magnificent gardens."

English Garden

"No one does ecology-based plant harmonies better than these two, and it's just so sweepingly, stunningly beautiful."

—Valerie Easton, Pacific Northwest Magazine

"Oudolf is eager to teach the rest of us how to recreate the effect in our home gardens. ... Of particular interest are the book's detailed planting plans, which show how Oudolf ... deliberately creates a 'layered look' that looks unstudied and provides year-round interest."


"Top garden designers Oudolf and Kingsbury consider twenty-first-century gardening trends and challenges in this essential, informative, and inspiring guide."


"Indispensable. ... An impassioned plea for packing beds tightly, interlacing species lightly, choosing plants that survive multiple stresses, [and] letting seed heads stand through winter."

—Dominique Browning, New York Times Book Review

"A thoughtful, insightful guide that deserves serious consideration."

Library Journal

"Oudolf details for the first time the specific ingredients that go into his horticultural alchemy, and even includes original plans and plant charts."

Elle Décor

"You could get lost in the landscapes featured in this book. ... Study it and you'll be one step closer to designing your own tumbling, flopping, blooming-meadow-inspired border of flowers, shrubs and grasses."

—Katie Elzer, Wilmington Star News

"Packed with detailed and enticingly adaptable plans, the 280-page volume is a one-stop seminar of the Oudolfian system of gardening, which is as much about advance planning as it is about total chance."

—Mitchell Owens, Daily AD (Architectural Digest Blog)

"Establishes the 'new style' as a potent artistic and intellectual movement. This book has real meat. The liberal use of Oudolf's planting plans are reason alone to buy this book."

Grounded Design

"The release of this book marks a watershed moment. We are offered substantially greater insight into Piet Oudolf's design process. ... It is destined to be required reading for aspiring landscape designers, landscape architects and those interested in naturalistic planting design."

—Adam Woodruff, Designers on Design (APLD)

About the authors

Piet Oudolf

Piet Oudolf is among the world's most innovative garden designers and a leading exponent of naturalistic planting, a style that takes inspiration from nature but employs artistic skill in creating planting schemes. Oudolf's extensive work over 30 years of practice includes public and private gardens all over the world. He is best known for his work on the High Line and Battery Park in New York, the Lurie Garden in Chicago's Millennium Park, Potters Field in London, and his own private garden at Hummelo in the Netherlands.

Read more about Piet Oudolf

Noel Kingsbury

Noel Kingsbury is a well-known designer, commentator, and writer on plants, gardens, landscape, and the environment. A a passionate advocate for sustainable plant combinations, he trials plants and gardens at his home on the border between England and Wales and travels widely.

Read more about Noel Kingsbury

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