to go along with the discussion about planting design raging below, i thought i’d post this as an example of what can happen when a good designer and a good plantsman work together.
as part of Chicagos Millenium Park it references the indigenous landscape of the Midwest. the beds are contoured so the visitors walk along with the gardens at knee and waist height immersing them in colour. the native perennials (over 200 species) were carefully selected to create a dramatic sequence of colour and seasonal change. the effect is like a painting whose tone continually shifts throughout the year. if anything, i think it shows, if you want to create abstract effects 1. you cant be lazy about it and 2. you have to know your stuff
photograph copyright: Scott McDonald
drawings copyright: Gustafson Porter Ltd