Neil G. Odenwald
Dr. Neil G. Odenwald was a professor and director of the LSU Robert Reich School of Landscape Architecture. Odenwald passed away in 2021.
Through his love of plant materials and planting design, Odenwald has made a significant impact on the people and gardens in the South. With a Master of Landscape Architecture from LSU and a PhD in Horticulture from Mississippi State University, Odenwald had a wealth of knowledge and understanding in relation to the garden. During his tenure as a professor and director of the LSU Robert Reich School of Landscape Architecture, Odenwald encouraged students to explore landscapes through travel in addition to using resources in their own backyard, such as Hilltop Arboretum.
Odenwald wrote many books and coauthored, with James Turner, Identification, Selection & Use of Southern Plants, a staple in every gardener’s library. His hands have also been “in the dirt” at Rosedown Gardens, Afton Villa Gardens, Melrose Plantation, LongVue Garden, and New Orleans City Park. In addition, he spoke at garden symposia and garden club meetings across the country.
Currently, the Robert Reich School of Landscape Architecture is raising funds to endow the Neil G. Odenwald Distinguished Professorship, which will be used to recruit and retain outstanding faculty at the school. In honoring and continuing Odenwald’s teachings, the professorship will be focused on instruction in plant materials, planting design, and horticultural topics, ensuring these subjects continue to have a prominent place in the landscape architecture curriculum.