Vitra in Bloom

John Hill
23. June 2021
Photo: Julien Lanoo © Vitra

The latest addition to the Vitra Campus in Weil am Rhein Germany, famous for its collection of contemporary architecture, is a garden instantly recognizable as a Piet Oudolf creation. Planted last year, the perennial garden designed by the famed Dutch gardener recently opened to the public.

The new garden is located next to VitraHaus, the Herzog & de Meuron-designed building that is the most public element on the Vitra Campus, which is also home to a design museum, a conference center, and production facilities for the Swiss furniture company. This location means visitors will encounter garden's the meandering paths and year-round selection of plants and flowers immediately after leaving their car. As such, the garden serves as a way to welcome visitors to the campus, as well as a place to rest and relax before heading home. Below is a visual tour through this new addition to the Vitra Campus.

The garden, which sits next to the VitraHaus at left and R. Buckminster Fuller's Dome at right, had to contend with existing features on site, including a tree rung by Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec's "Ring." (Photo: Julien Lanoo © Vitra)
Curves mainly comprise the paths of the new garden, minus one following "Ruisseau," a fountain also by the Bouroullecs. (Photo: Julien Lanoo © Vitra)
In an interview with Vitra last year, Oudolf explained the importance of "[using] plants to draw attention from the open sky down to the ground, and thus to open up new perspectives – including on the surrounding buildings." Renzo Piano's Diogene and Carsten Höller's Slide Tower are seen here beyond the garden. (Photo: Julien Lanoo © Vitra)
As photographed in May, about a month before it opened, the garden was awash in purples and greens. (Photo: Julien Lanoo © Vitra)
Last November, though, the garden was saturated with yellows and reds, aligned with Oudolf's way of selecting plants and flowers to create interest throughout the year. (Photo: Dejan Jovanovic © Vitra)
Plantings are also selected for benefitting birds, bees, and other creatures. (Photo: Dejan Jovanovic © Vitra)
Around 30,000 plants populate the new garden on the Vitra Campus. (Photo: Dejan Jovanovic © Vitra)

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