Wolfgang Oehme on Bringing American Plants to America


Fed Reserve3-400
Photo by
Roger Foley

Sure, it’s the Federal Reserve building in D.C. but I promise no alarming news about the economy, just visions of the stunning landscape by the world-famous firm of Oehme van Sweden Landscape Architects. (Here’s their page about the project.) This two-acre garden on top of the Reserve’s parking lot is not just gorgeous but a great example of the “New American Garden” style created by this team. And as Oehme mentions in this short interview, the garden uses American plants that were popular in Europe but not here, until they brought them here and popularized them.  Like what?  Most famously, Rudbeckia.

Don’t miss the residential landscape by Oehme van Sweden in this month’s Garden Design Magazine.  And if you’re in the DC area, Wolfgang Oehme is speaking about “Bringing the American Garden Home” at the Corcoran Gallery of Art next Monday evening, March 30.

Fed Reserve4-400 Fed Reserve400Photos by Roger Foley


  1. It is great that so many firms are using more American plantings, however it would be better if they actually checked for suitability to the area! So many plants aren’t just “American”. Their evolution can make them invasive even just a few hundred miles from their native area.

    I’m happy to see some of the oldies and goodies making a come-back here on our shores!

  2. More stunning photos and discussion of their design philosophy in ‘Gardening with Nature’ – James van Sweden. Perhaps add it to your book offerings.

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