An Historic Design – Longwood Gardens – USA

The Rose Garden at Longwood Gardens, in southestern Pennsylvania, was originally designed by Pierre Samuel du Pont in the 1930s. The garden sits on the east side terrace of the classical Main Fountain Garden, and is directly connected to the current Topiary Garden where an analemmatic sundial has been constructed by Pierre S. du Pont himself.

The proposal redesigns the whole space, Rose Garden and Topiary Garden, to restore the historical coherence and to highlight the significance of the sundial.

The Rose Garden has been designed as a welcoming entrance for the sundial garden. The layout respects the framed entrance and the formal symmetry of the beds. Design features include asymmetric low hedges and a textured and dynamic plant palette, including perennials and woody plants, to form a setting for Mr. Dupont’s beloved climbing rose, ‘Direktor Benschop’.

The proposal for the current Topiary Garden simplifies the space to restore the ovoïd layout, retains the visual axis and contrasts the formality of the topiaries with naturalistic perennials and woody plants. The sundial defines the design.





Interpreting the original design:

the architecture of the space creates a sanctuary for the sundial.

Designs as interpreted by the Longwood Gardens horticultural staff :