Garden connects school students with literary classics

Every garden has a story, but the West Bloomfield High School Literary Garden, just outside of Detroit, Mich., has dozens. There are the stories of how of individual plants came to reside in a well-worked patch of dirt in what was once a neglected high school courtyard. The bittersweet vine was grown from seeds sent […]

A century-old landscape endures at Wyoming’s Trail End

John B. Kendrick came to Wyoming in 1879 as a poor, orphaned cowboy, and began building a ranching empire. By the early 1900s, he had amassed a wealth that allowed him to start construction on his dream home, a “castle on a hill” in Sheridan, Wyo. Trail End, the home Kendrick built, was completed in […]

Virginia Master Naturalists care for public landscapes and educate visitors

The public landscapes of Virginia benefit from an active corps of volunteers. Devoted to protecting the state’s natural ecosystem, these citizen scientists and stewards do everything from monitoring the health of important pollinators to transporting recycling materials at state parks. These volunteers are certified members of the Virginia Master Naturalists program, which started in 2006 […]

Granite Ridge builds smart home with connected landscape technology

In fall 2014, Granite Ridge Builders opened its NextSTEP Innovation Home Gallery in Fort Wayne, Ind. The home is packed with hundreds of gadgets and tools that allow homeowners to control or automate everything from lawn irrigation to lighting through wireless apps and remotes. The “STEP” in the name stands for smart technology and energy […]

Belle Isle Conservatory is a botanical treasure in Detroit

The Anna Scripps Whitcomb Conservatory at Belle Isle park was one of the first things Lisa Steinkopf’s husband took her to see when she moved to Detroit 30 years ago, and it has remained  a key destination for Steinkopf and her family. The Belle Isle Conservatory, as it’s commonly known locally, is the oldest continuously […]

Community effort brings new life to Stevens Park

The small South Carolina town of Kershaw is home to just under 2,000 people, but its Stevens Park offers those residents amenities many larger communities lack. A public swimming pool, amphitheater, skate park, nature trails, community center with rooms to rent and public bowling alley are just a few of the park’s highlights. Stevens Park […]

Encinitas Community Garden grows more than just food

Located 25 miles north of San Diego, the Southern California beach town of Encinitas has historically been a hotbed of agriculture, with everything from lima beans to avocados to citrus and cut flowers growing in its Mediterranean climate. But as the city’s population has grown over the years, more and more land that was once […]

Virginia’s Chesterfield County transforms turf into an urban orchard

In discussions of water quality and environmental stewardship, you often hear people talk about the need to eliminate “managed turf.” The term refers to those big grassy expanses that must be fertilized, watered and mowed, and that generally aren’t as good as more natural landscapes at trapping and filtering rainwater. Virginia’s Chesterfield County had just […]

Peek Inside the Garden of an Iris Collector

Iris flowers have always made an impression on Doug Chyz. Growing up, he remembers his father growing them in his yard. “One of my visuals from my childhood is he was going to buy Iris at this farm in western Massachusetts where we lived,” Chyz remembers. “We are driving down this road and all of a […]

At University of Puget Sound, Arbor Day is a Reminder that Tree Care Happens Year-Round

This year to celebrate Arbor Day, the grounds staff at the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, Wash., will work with members of that school’s Greek community to plant two new trees on campus on Saturday, April 30. They’ll celebrate the winning fraternity and sorority in a sustainability contest that encouraged Greek houses to compete to see […]