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Professional, personal, informational, or inquiring posts written by you on a variety of topics: plant pallets, food production, design methods, planning, pollinators, client relationships, botanical excursions, or just about anything interesting.

Exploring Placemaking in Mexico City

Posted by on Feb 19, 2017 in Design, Planning | 0 comments

Exploring Placemaking in Mexico City

This article discusses the adventures of exploring peacemaking in at the Foro Lindbergh section of Parque México in Mexico City. Finding what works isn’t about a couple of community meetings and setting the course for a couple of activities, but can mean a series of trials and error, as well as a continual willingness to be flexible and adventurous. I think this project emphasizes the importance of grasping the idea that the use of a space changes over time and with the dynamics of the groups that primarily use that space.

A Critical Analysis of Forest Gardens

Posted by on Jul 3, 2016 in Blog | 0 comments

Here is an interesting article that is a critical analysis of forest gardens in temperate regions. It is worth a read even if you disagree. I think there are ideas here that are worth more discussion and thought into problem solving.

Heavy Metals and Effectiveness of Long-term Bioretention

Posted by on Mar 16, 2016 in Blog | 0 comments

Heavy Metals and Effectiveness of Long-term Bioretention

This article provides a research review concerning the efficacy of long-term bioretention use. The results of the presented data is interesting and encouraging!

Pollinator Food Sources

Posted by on Mar 13, 2016 in Blog, Design, Planting Plans | 0 comments

Pollinator Food Sources

We hear a lot about supporting pollinators in mainstream publications, but it is often difficult to find information that provides thorough lists of plants (not just the top 5 flowers), include both larval food and nectar plants, include bats and beetles rather than just bees and butterflies, or are specific to the regions in which we work.

The Pollinator Partnership at Pollinator.org is a professional resource for this very thing. It includes the information you might expect from such an organization: beekeeping tips, challenges to plant gardens, information on the connection between pollinators and our food supply.

What is perhaps the most helpful for designers, are the PDF planting guides they’ve created for 31 distinct ecoregions of the U.S. and 2 for Canada. These are beautiful, full-color, well-organized pages that separate lists of perennials, trees, shrubs, and vines by bloom period, color and site requirements, pollinator attractors, and hosts for larva. These pages also include definitions of pollinator types and guidelines for creating sufficient and varied habitats. Plant lists start at about page 16. 

You can search for your own ecoregion by entering your zip code in the search box.

Connecting the Drops with Rainwater Harvesting

Posted by on Feb 27, 2016 in Construction, Water Management | 0 comments

From the “Focus on Sustainability” webinar series by the Ecological Landscape Alliance:

Caterpillar Identification

Posted by on Feb 20, 2016 in Blog, Planting Plans | 0 comments

Caterpillar Identification

Spring has sprung for some of you in the more southerly climates, so I thought it would be fun to include this moth and butterfly caterpillar identification guide. I had the opportunity to watch a cecropia moth hatch last year – it was a very cool experience and I was amazed by how active the moth could be while still in its cocoon and trying to get out.

Here are a few other sites that offer detailed information on the life cycles and habitats of the east and west U.S.:

Lepidoptera of the Pacific Northwest

Caterpillars of the Eastern Forests

 

 

The Nature of Cities

Posted by on Feb 13, 2016 in Planning | 0 comments

The Nature of Cities

I think it’s helpful to know what people are reading and what they are finding useful in pursuing their goals for professional growth. I like to keep topics diverse, academic, and peer-reviewed. I like to know that the articles are not only well thought-out, but that the information has been corroborated with real-life experience or the research is consistent, repeatable, and useful. For instance, there are many common landscape  practices that are repeated and instructed throughout written, printed, and oral material, that when held up to actual research, are wrong. Yet information to support practices is often difficult to find, outdated, or un-vetted. Our post Horticultural Myths Exposed in March ’15 provides a link to updated landscape practices that are research-based and peer-reviewed.

I’d like to direct you to a website I recently found for The Nature of Cities, an organization that “promotes worldwide dialog and action to create green cities that are sustainable, resilient, livable, and just.” Included are blog posts from around the world, podcasts, a gallery of graffiti, and a journaled journey of a couple traveling on foot from Bangkok to Barcelona (beginning  January 2016).

This link takes you to The Nature of Cities blog all-content page. As always, you are encouraged to share articles that you find interesting and what questions or thoughts they raise for you. It would be great to get some dialogue going within the comments of this blog.

Plants and Birds

Posted by on Jan 23, 2016 in Blog | 0 comments

Plants and Birds

Below are some helpful online resources showing what native plant species benefit what birds, mostly as food sources, but some as cover or nesting material.

<http://www.creditvalleyca.ca/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/21310-breeding-birds.pdf> A beautiful visual reference that includes foraging guilds and nesting.

<http://www.loudounwildlife.org/PDF_Files/Gardening_for_Wildlife_Plant_List.pdf> This list includes wildflowers, shrubs, and trees. The document also provides a great list of books used to develop their plant list and which provide even more detailed information.

<http://www.pabirdplants.org/> The BirdPlant Database near the bottom of the page allows you to search by either bird or plant (mostly trees and shrubs).

Kate also provided this link to a New York Times article called the Chickadee’s Guide to Gardening. It describes the writer’s observational study about the number of insects that a native tree versus a non-native tree provided to a family of chickadees throughout the growing season. I’ve used this resource with clients to give them an idea of why they should care about the plants we are choosing in the landscape, and they have appreciated the very accessible, anecdotal information.