Jane Sarah Bihr-de Salis: Does a garden need visible boundaries? How can this transition otherwise be achieved and perceived? These questions arose at the onset of a project for a vicar and her husband. Now clipped hornbeam provides spatial articulation to a garden which flows seamlessly into the surrounding fields. At the property’s west edge, the hedges are more densely planted to shield the garden from the neighboring residence. In spring and fall the meadow is accentuated by narcissus, peonies and autumn crocus. The lawn seems to be extending an invitation to stroll or relax between it’s hedges. A climbing rose has conquered the carport’s back wall. In front of the house seven box domes inhabit a gravel bed. The number of hornbeam shapes and box domes is rooted in religious symbolism. Theological concepts also played a role in the design of the tea house, a pavilion whose structure appears to be the hornbeam hedges surrounding it. In its interior a loudly painted blue ceiling with gold-plated stars – arranged in the client’s birth constellation – brings chapel vaulting to mind. The floor surface, consisting of an arrangement of bone segments, makes reference to hell. There is mention in historical literature of the use of bone by the poor as flooring material during the Middle Ages, and as symbol of eternal life in ancient Greece. The bones used in the tea house were supplied by the cook at the local nursing home. He had cooperated in this endeavor the previous winter by repeatedly placing osso bucco on the meal plan.
Landscape Architecture: Jane Sarah Bihr-de Salis
Project: Garten Lukoschus-Dinter
Location: Kallern, Switzerland
Text: Jane Bihr