Karl Foerster Perennial Garden
"If I'm born again, I'll be a gardener again, and next time. For for a single life this profession was too great."
Karl Foerster (1874-1970), gardener, breeder and garden philosopher, loved his job like no other. With his writings and the introduction of numerous wild and cultivated shrubs, he made a lasting contribution to German and international garden culture. For this reason, the Gärten der Welt dedicated the Karl Foerster Perennial Garden, which opened in March 2008 and consists of sophisticated combinations of plants and freely designed natural gardens, in his honour. One special feature of the garden are the distinctive solitary shrubs, which ensure the garden remains vividly in flower, even outside the main season. That’s why it is also called the "garden of the four seasons".
The garden was designed by the leading garden historian Dr Johannes Schwarzkopf and landscape designer Christian Meyer. The design concept was inspired by Foerster’s book on the use of grasses and ferns in gardens ("Einzug der Gräser und Farne in die Gärten", 1957). A total of 3,600 square metres plays host to formal garden areas with geometric beds, which are contrasted by more landscaped garden elements. The beds feature a selection of magnificent perennials. The specially selected varieties were chosen according to Foerster’s idea of colour triads, e.g. "sky blue-pink-white". The plantings are framed by disciplined boxwood hedges. In the centre of the garden, a turquoise-blue wooden pergola invites you to linger and look at the flower oasis.
Opposite the pergola, you’ll find loosely designed scenes such as a heather garden, an open forest fringe and a partially shaded rock garden, which also plays on Foerster's ideas. Forest clearings, lawn bays and deep shadow areas merge fluently into the environment of the Marzahn park area. Incidentally, the Karl Foerster Perennial Garden is the only garden in the Gärten der Welt, where no building can be found. This ensures visitors have an unobstructed view of the year-round flowering perennials and shrubs.
A book by Karl Foerster gives an honourable mention to a special shade of blue. In sunlight, it appears deep blue. From certain angles, however, it appears sea green, and on cloudy days, it shimmers in restrained blue-greys. For days, the designers of the garden tried to produce this shade of blue, but they simply couldn’t get it. But it was decided that this colour was an absolute must for the pergola! But after a bit more alchemical trial and error, the enchanting pergola was finally completed, so that it now shines atop its 88 supports in a blue that makes the sky look pale.