Category Archives: sustainable landscapes

Garden Designers Roundtable: Maintaining a Grand Plan

I had the privilege last week of free and unfettered access to one of America’s great country estates, Nemours. Happy for a working day out in a grand garden I had only heard about, I went.  Nemours, in Delaware, was … Read more

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LABELS: American Architecture, Gardens, Landscape Preservation, romantic ideal, sustainable landscapes 17 Comments

Vista and View Preservation

An article yesterday in the New York Times about a proposed and (yes) sustainably built and ‘green’ corporate headquarters that will rise above the Palisades along the Hudson River galvanized my thinking about view preservation as part of the whole save the … Read more

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LABELS: Gardens, Landscape Preservation, sustainability, sustainable landscapes 2 Comments

In my Reader…Tokyo DIY Gardening

You know I’m not a huge DIY person.  If everyone did that, I’d be out of business.  BUT, I love Tokyo DIY Gardening.  An open source site for anyone who gardens in overcrowded Tokyo. It is also chock full of … Read more

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LABELS: Garden Styles, inspiration, Japan, sustainability, sustainable landscapes Leave a comment

Sustainability and the ‘M’ word

Over the past weekend there has been much discussion in the garden and landscape community about sustainability, healthy environments and organic practices.  Both the American Society of Landscape Architects and the Garden Writers Association had their annual conferences and saving … Read more

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LABELS: business, economy, Gardens, green, green washing, sustainability, sustainable landscapes 16 Comments

Garden Designer’s Bloglink: 5 Regional Ideas

Grab a snack…this might take a while… In December, as a guest on Garden Gossip, I extolled listeners to ‘celebrate their regions’  instead of trying to emulate a garden design style that is at odds with their specific location. That … Read more

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LABELS: architectural salvage, green, Landscape Design, landscape designer, native plants, New Jersey, Planting Design, recycling, sustainability, sustainable landscapes 23 Comments

My Garden State|The Meadowlands and the Hackensack River

This is a tale of human alteration of the natural world that is leaning towards having a happy ending.  Anyone who grew up, as I did, near the Hackensack River and the adjacent Meadowlands knows that even in our lifetimes, … Read more

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LABELS: green, native plants, New Jersey, sustainable landscapes 6 Comments

Why not Wisteria?

As beautiful and romantic as it is… Here’s why I never recommend it, plain and simple. Wisteria escaped from a garden climbing a very large Picea abies on my block There are wisteria vines choking out, shading foliage and pulling … Read more

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LABELS: Garden Styles, sustainability, sustainable landscapes Leave a comment

More than Me

Ok. Let me start off by saying that what I’m about to say is going to really going to make some people angry. I suspect it will be those with a holier than thou sensibility. I also suspect that it … Read more

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LABELS: green, green washing, sustainability, sustainable landscapes, volunteerism 5 Comments

Land Speak

At a client’s holiday party at their farm, I met one of their neighbors. She asked me how I knew the host and hostess. When I told her that I was their landscape designer, she complemented me by saying how … Read more

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LABELS: Creative Process, Gardens, sustainable landscapes 3 Comments

Showhouse Season V, Issue 2. The Design Process

All of the landscape design invitees for the 2009 showhouse were provided with a master plan which illustrated the homeowner’s and the consulting landscape architect’s very formal vision for the property. There would be an addition to the east side … Read more

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LABELS: Creative Process, Designer Showhouses, formal gardens, Garden Styles, inspiration, Landscape Design, Sheep's Run, sustainable landscapes, VNA of Central NJ Leave a comment

My Last Minute List–Any Gardener Would Want These

My father loved Christmas, he believed in Virginia’s Santa. When I was small he created magical surprises and taught me to find joy in the holiday. Every year he would wait until Christmas Eve to do his shopping and decorate … Read more

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LABELS: Garden Styles, gardeners, gifts, organic, sustainable landscapes Leave a comment

#24–Last day to finish

We started first and are finishing last. For the past week there’s been little but this crazy sprint to the end. The almost completed rockery There have been soooo many issues this week that it’s hard to even recount them. … Read more

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LABELS: Designer Showhouses, green, sustainable landscapes 2 Comments

#11 Sites & soil

This morning, on another project, they started digging for a pool. Before development 30-40 years ago the area was a known for its rose growing industry so when the excavator dug his first hole we found a layer of ash … Read more

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LABELS: Landscape Design, recycling, rock work, sustainable landscapes Leave a comment

#7–Ready, Set, Go…Rain

We were ready to deliver the excavator earlier this week and get rocking (pun intended) and the rains came. All of us were scrambling to get other (read paying) work done outside so that the forced time inside could be … Read more

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LABELS: Landscape Design, Landscape Lighting, sustainable landscapes Leave a comment

#4–Plants and Problems

I’ve done a quick CAD color rendering to try and approximate the quantities of plants that I will need to order in the next few weeks. It’s difficult since I really have no idea what lies beneath the surface stones, … Read more

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LABELS: cad, Landscape Design, Planting Design, rock work, sustainable landscapes 2 Comments

Why Green? An Opinionated Viewpoint

This time last year I was getting ready to attend the 2007 Association of Professional Landscape Designers annual conference. Held in Southern California, the 10 day visit began a transformation about the way I think about landscape design–although it has … Read more

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LABELS: California, green, Landscape Design, sustainable landscapes 1 Comment