Discover the Rainbow-Hued Gardens of Landscape Designer Frederico Azevedo
The Hamptons garden maestro talks to Galerie about his vibrant creations
Over the past 30 years, Brazilian-born landscape designer Frederico Azevedo has made a name for himself by conjuring rainbow-hued gardens in the Hamptons through his firm, Unlimited Earth Care. Now he has compiled some of his most breathtaking landscapes in a new book, Bloom: The Luminous Gardens of Frederico Azevedo (Pointed Leaf Press; $75).
Known for his sinuous shapes, eco-friendly ethos, and use of native flowers, the award-winning designer was influenced at an early age by Brazilian landscape geniuses Lota de Macedo Soares and Roberto Burle Marx. After studying landscape design in Brazil and at the University of Oxford, Azevedo landed in the United States in the early 1990s. “It was all white everything, and Philippe Starck was the big thing,” he recalls in the book.
Determined to buck the trend, he opened his own practice in 1993 and hasn’t looked back, even opening a Bridgehampton garden concept store under the same name in 2006. To coincide with the new release, Azevedo will be hosting a book signing at this year’s Holiday House Hamptons (90 Wild Goose Lane, Water Mill) on July 27.
Galerie caught up with Azevedo to learn more about some of the standout gardens from his book. See the interview below.
Describe your style in five words or less.
Colorful, sustainable, never too precious.
What are your favorite flowers to work with and why?
All of them. Masses of flowers, in grand, tumbling heaps and curving borders. Flowers spilling out of urns and neatly planted along walkways. For me, it all begins with flowers.
Do you have a design philosophy as it relates to color?
My design philosophy is color. When I first started working in the Hamptons in the ’90s everyone was planting white gardens, and I had visions of designing in full color. I studied in Brazil and England, both of which have a tradition of colorful, natural-feeling landscapes and gardens. So I risked it. My first project was all in red, yellow, and orange, and people loved it—colorful flowers just make people happy.
What is your favorite project in the book and why?
Every project is my favorite, and I truly mean that. Designing gardens means assembling a living, changing environment that is site-specific. I have a distinct style, but each project comes together and blooms in a unique way.
What has been your biggest challenge professionally?
Constantly updating. I have to stay in tune with the changing environment and make sure that I’m designing in a way that works with nature. I work sustainably and use native or well-adapted plants that attract butterflies, bees, and birds to encourage a healthy environment. Innovations in sustainable design are happening all the time, and I want to be using the newest materials and keeping up with the latest technology.