The Landscape Architect as Plantsman: Materiality, Representation and Finding the Lost Gardener

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Virginia Tech

Plants are the unique materials of landscape architecture, and, as any landscape architect will attest, the first question likely to be posed by a new acquaintance will be about a plant. Today's world offers landscape architects more and more opportunities and demands requiring a broad and thorough understanding of the unique characteristics of plants — to be plantsmen. Yet, the curricula of landscape architecture education programs nationwide are deficient in plant knowledge requirements, and by and large the state registration examinations for professional licensing do not include tests of plant knowledge. This thesis explores the idea that in addition to allowing the landscape architect to respond to those demands, plantsmanship also contributes positively beginning in the earliest stages of the design process when the landscape architect can represent plants in ways that allow him or her to cue into accumulated plant knowledge.

Garden, Planting Design, Drawing