News Filed Under Landscape Architecture
Mississippi landscapers often see favorite trees fall victim to lightning, strong winds and other elements, especially during tropical storm season, leaving the owners to make hard decisions on the trees’ future health.
Typical damage includes wounds, split branches, exposed roots, various degrees of leaning trunks, and broken and torn limbs. In many cases, a damaged tree must be removed and replaced.
MISSISSIPPI STATE – Planting the right trees in the best locations is a good investment that can also pay dividends in energy savings for home and business owners.
Bob Brzuszek, associate professor in Mississippi State University’s Department of Landscape Architecture, said planting trees that block the summer sun on the south and west sides of buildings and roofs can substantially reduce air-conditioning costs.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi State University architecture students designed a sustainable home that can provide its own electricity, water supply and food for a family of four.
In the final project of a sustainable design class, the students turned theoretical principles into a practical home and landscape. They designed all aspects of a self-supporting, modern homestead, including features like solar energy use, rainwater harvesting, wastewater management, and gardens, trees and shrubs to provide a year-round food supply.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Experts at Mississippi State University recommend that those planting trees in the landscape this Arbor Day do their homework before getting started.
“Most people see a tree they like and decide that they want to have one in their yard, but that is really not the way to decide what kind of tree to plant,” said John Kushla, an associate Extension and research professor with Mississippi State University’s Extension Service and the Forestry and Wildlife Research Center.
Even though fall is the ideal time, it’s still not too late to plant nice trees into our Mississippi gardens and landscapes. Of course I can’t list every tree in this column, but I want to draw your attention to a few I’m sure you won’t be disappointed to have in your yard.
The first is the bald cypress. You may think it has to be planted in soggy locations, but this tree is very adaptable. Some of the best specimens I have seen were being grown in very high and dry locations such as islands in parking lots and planting wells in sidewalks.
MISSISSIPPI STATE – An undeveloped courtyard at Mississippi State University’s landscape architecture facility provided the challenge for student teams in Design Week 2013.
The theme of the annual learning competition was Art into Nature. The teams, composed of landscape architecture and landscape contracting students and a faculty advisor, competed to design the best courtyard based on the space and needs. The challenge was to create an artistic and ecologically integrated design for the landscape architecture facilities, then present it to the judges in a compelling fashion.
January and February are good times to see where landscapes need evergreen color to break out of the drab grays and browns of winter. When you find a spot that needs a pick-me-up, Savannah holly is a superb evergreen plant to grow in our Mississippi gardens and landscapes.
It has a natural pyramidal growth habit that is loose and open. This holly is versatile in the landscape and can be used for screening or strategically placed as single specimens.
There’s nothing like reaching into the toe of a Christmas stocking under your tree and finding a fresh and tasty satsuma orange that came right from your own garden.
I’d like to say I’ve done that, but so far, all the fresh satsumas I’ve enjoyed have come from my friend Terry’s house. Let me just say that I don’t have to worry about scurvy for a while.
POPLARVILLE -- A Mississippi State University experiment station recently won first place in a North American landscape design competition.
The South Mississippi Branch Experiment Station in Poplarville took top honors in the first annual All-America Selections’ Landscape Design Contest.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Landscape and garden enthusiasts can get help planning for next spring from nationally acclaimed designers at a Mississippi State University landscape design event.
The 57th annual Edward C. Martin Jr. Landscape Design Symposium will be Oct. 17 from 9 a.m. to noon at the Bost Conference Center on MSU’s Starkville campus. Attendees can preregister by Oct. 12 for $20 or register at the door for $25.
STARKVILLE – A Mississippi museum is conserving the past inside and embracing the future outside with its modern, sustainable landscape.
Visitors to the Oktibbeha County Heritage Museum will enjoy a new pavilion’s shade but may not realize they are surrounded by environmentally friendly solutions to a challenging landscape using environmentally friendly solutions.
MISSISSIPPI STATE – Gardeners may be getting ready to put away their gloves for the year, but now is the perfect time to get a head start on environmentally friendly landscaping projects.
Planning ahead can make yard maintenance easier, save money and conserve natural resources.
If you’re looking for a vigorous and unique ground cover for your landscape, consider a popular ornamental that I really enjoy, the colorful sweet potato vine.
Longtime favorites include Margarita, which is lime green with large leaves; Blackie, a cut-leaf variety with dark purple to black foliage; and Tricolor, which has leaves of green, pink and white.
New selections have introduced amazing color selections and leaf shapes.
JACKSON – Mississippians can see footage of the West’s wildfires nearly every day, but many could be surprised to learn that their own state averages more than 600 wildfires a year. With urban sprawl infringing on the state’s forests, the fire risk is growing.
“Wildfires don’t get much attention here because we aren’t impacted like people who live in the West,” said Bob Brzuszek, associate professor of landscape architecture at Mississippi State University. “Our climate is more humid, we have a great fire service, and our wildfires tend to happen in more rural areas.”
MISSISSIPPI STATE – Mississippi State University is “beating the bushes” for high school students with horticultural interests for a June 3-6 camp on campus.
Designed for students age 15 to 17, the 43rd annual Horticulture and Landscape Architecture Summer Camp will offer a variety of educational and fun activities.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- The Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture honored Mississippi State University associate professor Michael Seymour with the national 2012 Excellence in Teaching Award.
Seymour has taught in MSU’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences in the Department of Landscape Architecture for seven years. He has distinguished himself as an outstanding educator, researcher and colleague, said Sadik Artunc, head of the landscape architecture department.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A storm-resistant landscape design and consistent tree health monitoring can save cities and property owners time and money.
“Well-designed landscapes are easier to maintain and reduce the risk of damage from a fallen tree or limb,” said John Kushla, a Mississippi State University Extension Service forestry specialist and associate research professor in the Forest and Wildlife Research Center.
Good design helps trees weather storms more easily.
In my job with Mississippi State University, I am asked a lot of questions about problems people have with plants and ideas they have for their landscapes and gardens.
As we begin the new year, here is my list of four resolutions to help make your landscape and garden more enjoyable and productive in 2012.
1- Get those pesky landscape and lawn weeds under control.
PICAYUNE – Mississippi State University’s Crosby Arboretum has a new, high-tech way for visitors to experience the nature preserve.
Bob Brzuszek, associate professor of landscape architecture at MSU, created an interactive application through GPTrex, a company focused on providing fun, family adventures while boosting interest in a local community’s cultural, historical and educational venues.