Monumental Topiary

Solitair Nursery in Belgium

March 2018: I was lucky enough to accompany a photographer to Solitair Nursery in Belgium, a wholesale nursery selling large topiary specimens to garden and landscape designers. The place was mind-blowing: acres and acres of flat land occupied by towering topiary specimens like vast chess pieces. Clipped trees of many different kinds were to be found growing in regimented rows, from geometric yew and box cushions to cloud-pruned osmanthus. The nursery specialises in root-balling these trees, using huge machines to lift and wrap the roots without damaging. Then they are transported all round Europe on articulated lorries, enabling the creation of instant, 'mature' gardens. We photographed the topiary in black and white, as my own photos show here, focusing the eye on the graphic lines and crazy shapes of the topiary.