New Belle Isle garden by world-renowned designer breaks ground

Belle Isle is getting a new attraction on the island, thanks to a world-renowned designer. 

Ground breaks for a new 2.5-acre garden Tuesday, created by Dutch designer Piet Oudolf. Oudolf's work can be seen at Lurie Garden in Chicago and the Highline in New York City, among many other gardens worldwide.

"Think like an Impressionist painter," Duncan Campbell with volunteer group Oudolf Garden Detroit explains. "[Oudolf] clumps perennials together to create a surrounding garden in a sculptural sense. And you'll be able to walk through ... and we're going to have granite walkways through it, crushed granite, and then grass, tall plants. It's going to be absolutely lovely."

Campbell say 18,000 plants being grown for the site have been ordered for a planned installation in September. Most of the plants have been ordered from Michigan growers.

Another planting will take place in June 2020, with a garden opening expected later that fall. It will sit in front of the Nancy Brown Peace Carrilon. 

The total project on the island park in the Detroit River is estimated to cost $4.2 million. The volunteer group Oudolf Garden Detroit is raising money through a plant sale.