Went to do a presentation at the Morris Arboretum-hosted New Directions in the American Landscape conference. Its like, the premiere ecological conference in the east coast. Some really good presenters with great topics.
One in particular was Dr James Hitchmough’s talk on using native and non-natives to produce generated meadows via seed. He held no punches, saying that non natives have a place in our American landscapes. He totally dissed our american landscape as boring and not really gardens, but “landscapes”. He talked about how the Brits are real gardeners and implied that most Americans aren’t. I believe he is right about that. Most Americans are so disconnected from the soil. Its pretty sad, really. He is amazing in his insight into designing wonderful, colorful and functional meadow gardens and particularly his interest in creating landscapes for the common folk and then using surveys at different times of the year as the gardens grow to determine how people feel about them. The idea is to create gardens by seed that have been proven to provide ecological services and fit the bill for a clean, crisp design accompanied by awesome floral color.
above: Dr Hitchmough discusses our American faults and weaknesses. He was right on all accounts.
I read about him in Noel Kingsbury’s blog a month or so ago. and the day after, my friend Gail sent me this video. I contacted him and we had a few emails back-and-forth and then I realized I was speaking just before he did today, so I was really pumped about hearing what he had to say. Coincidence? He basically covered this paper in his talk. It is ground breaking, revealing stuff and solid as a rock. One of the best papers I have read in some time. I really like this guy. I like that his mission is to make stellar gardens that appeal to the common folks.
see this link for uber-cool video
I will write some about the other talks later. And as soon as a baboon, I will post the slide show that I used. I tried for a long while the other day but forgot how and have to relearn, ugh.
Connecticut College Arboretum “selfie”!
James’ paper is a particularly good read if you care about planet earth. go ahead ya’ll, click it!