Civic and Commercial Projects

New York Botanical Garden

The Native Plant Garden & Azalea Garden

Bronx, NY • Completed 2011

The overwhelmingly positive response to the firm’s work at the Chicago Botanic Garden, led by van Sweden with Sheila Brady, resulted in two commissions at this New York City site: Substantially reworking the Native Plant Garden and helping to update the Azalea Garden. Sadly, at this point van Sweden’s health was severely compromised and he was unable to participate. It marks a significant moment in the firm’s transition to a new firm, OEHME, VAN SWEDEN | OvS, and a new generation of leaders.

The 3.5-acre Native Plant Garden was designed by Sheila Brady at OEHME, VAN SWEDEN | OvS. The Azalea Garden is a collaboration: OLIN Partnership is responsible for the master plan; staff from the New York Botanical Garden and the Royal Horticultural Society designed the azaleas and rhododendrons; Towers | Golde designed the pathways and overlooks; and OEHME, VAN SWEDEN | OvS designed the herbaceous perennial plantings.


This new [Native Plant] garden, then, is the climax of the Botanical Garden’s ambitious projects to remake itself. The new garden is not static or sculptured; it is a shifting, transforming web of interactions: Nature, shaped, nudged, guided and cultivated, by its human servants.[1]

Edward Rothstein


Learn More

  • 2900 Southern Boulevard
    Bronx, NY 10458

New York Botanical Garden website

See What's Out There Profile


[1] Edward Rothstein, “A Landscape, and a Concept, for All Seasons,” New York Times, May 3, 2013, C32.




The Photographers

Sally Gall (American, b. 1956)
In addition to her fine art career, Gall, who is based in New York City, teaches photography and works as an editorial, landscape, and lifestyle photographer. Her work is part of several museum and corporate collections and she has been awarded prestigious fellowships, including two MacDowell Colony Fellowships and a Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Residency. Her work is published in two books of photographs, The Water’s Edge and Subterranea, and has been included in numerous shows.