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Landscape Architecture Magazine

Landscape Architecture Magazine May 2015

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American Society of Landscape Architects
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12 Edities

in deze editie

12 min.
just add nature

“Ms. Thompson, what’s a log?” The question came from a kindergartener in a Boston elementary school in 2006, after his teacher (not her real name) read a story to the class about a possum hiding in a hollow log. As shocking as the question may sound, teachers all over the country have fielded similar ones for years. By 2005, when Richard Louv’s Last Child in the Woods launched the term “nature-deficit disorder” into everyday use, generations of kids in some city neighborhoods had had no experience of woods, never mind logs. Last Child in the Woods has sent all kinds of communities scrambling to offer some experience of nature to their children, and many of them have focused, logically enough, on schoolyards. As more landscape architects join the push to transform crumbling…

12 min.
trees for tokyo

A single, massive, multitrunked Zelkova serrata stands off-center on a plinth in a square ringed with canopies, the wooden supports of which echo the tree’s upward, arching, spreading form. The plinth doubles as a table, and people in the square can sit at its edge and gaze directly at the bole of the beautiful tree, its silver-gray bark wrapped in sackcloth. The Tokyo-based practice Studio on Site was responsible for this design in the new suburb of Kashiwanoha, built on greenfield land in the valley of the Tone River to Tokyo’s northeast. The site is a large mixed-use area with dense new housing, and it gives the impression of having been master planned from the beginning, but this is anything but the case. In the project’s early days of 2004–2005, the…

2 min.
welcome variety

I have thought of myself as a landscape architect since I first switched my major from architecture during my sophomore year at Louisiana State University back in 1965. The American Society of Landscape Architects has done an outstanding job of supporting and promoting our field all these years. And since becoming a member in 1986, I have dutifully paid my dues each year and have “tolerated” the LAM format, changes to, vision, and so on. It does a fine job of directing our thoughts, keeping us abreast of the latest things, and representing its members. That said, I take exception to the first two letters in the April issue of LAM. Since the first author has only ASLA after his name, I assume he’s a younger man. The second writer is…

10 min.
once and always the radical

BY THAÏSA WAY, ASLA; SEATTLE: UNIVERSITY OF WASHINGTON PRESS, 2015; 232 PAGES, $59.95. When Richard Haag, FASLA, arrived in Seattle to establish the landscape architecture program at the University of Washington (UW), the architect Victor Steinbrueck bellowed his welcome: “We have been waiting a long time for you!” The same might be said of Thaïsa Way’s new history of Haag’s design practice, The Landscape Architecture of Richard Haag: From Modern Space to Urban Ecological Design. Though the influence of his work can be seen in countless design practices, Haag, both the practitioner and professor, was obscured. Even those of us who studied at UW and briefly apprenticed with Haag knew only the outline of his story. Into this void, Way, a landscape historian in the UW Department of Landscape Architecture, enters with…

3 min.
farm factory

The juniors and seniors at Boston Latin School have a new schoolyard hangout. A maze of electrical equipment is bolted to the walls, pipes and wires snake around lab tables on the floor, and a series of narrow passageways is lined with vegetation. From the red-spectrum lighting, you might think it was some underground teenage nightclub, but there’s no illicit activity here—these kids are here to harvest hydroponic lettuce. In 2013, students from Boston Latin School won the Global Green USA Green School Makeover competition, and received a $75,000 endowment toward the school’s ongoing sustainability initiatives. Most of the money went toward a single big-ticket purchase: a Freight Farm, a self-contained, hydroponic growing system with space for 4,500 individual plants. Housed in a shipping container, a Freight Farm is a food-growing gadget…

4 min.
trees for midcentury

Climate change models are often applied to predict coastal effects—rising sea levels, loss of marine life—but a recent Chicago Botanic Garden study, funded with a $120,000 grant from the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services, took a different approach. It evaluated the effects of a warming climate on 50 trees commonly planted in the Great Lakes region of the United States to predict which varieties are likely to thrive in 2050. In all, 40 types of trees were rated as suitable for urban parks and residences, 15 for street planting, and 11 for legacy sites. Ten of the trees under study, including the American linden (Tilia americana), Japanese katsura (Cercidiphyllum japonicum), and Norway spruce (Picea abies), are projected to decline by 2050 under worst-case warming scenarios. Andrew Bell, the curator of…