‘Landscape Pleasures’: From Piet Oudolf to Self-Guided Garden Tours

The Parrish Art Museum

For 35 years, plantsman Piet Oudolf has lived and worked in Hummelo, a tiny village in east Netherlands, and his garden has become renowned for its radical approach and ideas about planting design.

The designer’s work is not confined to Europe. He is also the visionary behind The High Line in New York, Lurie Garden in Chicago, No. 5 Culture Chanel in Paris and London’s Serpentine Gallery — and the subject of Thomas Piper’s documentary, “Five Seasons, The Gardens of Piet Oudolf.”

The director will discuss his film following a screening on Friday, June 7, at 6 p.m. at the Parrish Art Museum in Water Mill, kicking off this year’s “Landscape Pleasures” series.

“The documentary immerses viewers in Oudolf’s work and takes us inside his creative process — from his beautifully abstract sketches to theories on beauty and the ecological implications of his ideas,” a press release said. “Intimate discussions take place through all four seasons at Hummelo, and during visits to Oudolf’s signature public works in New York, Chicago, and the Netherlands.”

Admission to the screening is $15 and $5 for members. The following day, three leaders in garden and landscape design will speak during a horticultural symposium, including Eric Groft, whose own work surrounds the Parrish Art Museum itself.

Renowned for his diverse residential, commercial and institutional work, Groft is dedicated to shepherding the evolution of Oehme van Sweden’s New American Garden Style, and is an industry leader in ecological sensitivity, environmental and wetland restoration, and shoreline stabilization and revetment — the focus of his many lectures.

Joining Groft is Simon Johnson, who has spent the last 30 years working on myriad garden and landscape projects — as diverse as a chalet in Switzerland, a chateau in Burgundy and the restoration of a garden in Scotland lost for 50 years, despite his specialization in English country housework.

His illustrated talk will explore the principles that guide his approach to his gardens, highlighting two completed projects — one in England and one in Connecticut — and introducing a current restoration project in Scotland.

Rounding out the trio is Noel Kingsbury, an English designer, writer and teacher who has considered himself a gardener since childhood, and is now best known for his promotion of naturalistic planting design. Passionate about all types of innovation in the garden, or the wider landscape, he will share memories of his 25 years in the field at “Landscape Pleasures,” discussing a variety of wild-style planting schemes from Europe, and his own trialling work.

On Sunday, self-guided tours will close the weekend of festivities, featuring four gardens open to ticketholders from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.: the Bridgehampton garden of Judy and Aaron Daniels, the East Hampton garden of Vincent Covello and Carol Mandel, and two gardens in Springs, one on Springs Fireplace Road and the other on Gerard Drive.

Tickets start at $250 and $200 for members, which include admission to the screening, symposium and garden tours, and sponsor-level patrons and above can attend a cocktail party on Saturday, June 8, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Southampton garden of Clelia and Tom Zacharias.

Designed by the late Hal Goldberg, the former Southampton Rose Society president, the garden was completed in 2016 — featuring three main garden rooms defined by taxus yew and boxwood hedges, punctuated with pleached hornbeam trees. Peonies, digitalis, hardy geraniums, blue phlox, lilies and ballerina roses fill a large English-style border, and the boxwood parterre is comprised of various white roses. The shady back garden room is bordered with sarcococca and includes astilbe, digitalis and heuchera.

“The overarching color theme of the garden is blue and purple, and in the late summer, the swaths of color from the long beds of blue vitex and purple continues,” the release said.

For more information, call (631) 283-2118 or visit parrishart.org.