Third Phase of GreenRoofs on Empire State Building Completed

October 1, 2013

21st-floor-terrace-rendering XeroFlor-Empire-State1-537x421
With Phase 1 completed in 2011, two more phases have recently been completed on “the world’s most famous skyscraper”, the Empire State Building in New York City.

This 1200sf section features and extensive system of mixed sedum, while another (slightly smaller) section brings the total square footage of ecoroof on the building to 9,100…an impressive feat. The first section, at 6900sf, is accessible, but also an “extensive” system of sedum etc.

Creative Use of Pallets in Veggie Garden

September 20, 2013

I love this creative use of wood pallets to create partitions in this outdoor space. They were also used to create raised beds. I’d love to see what they would look like if illuminated from inside with carefully place linear LED light strips!

SE Portland Yoga Studio Aims to Re-Open as a “Living Building”

September 19, 2013

Yoga Union – a staple in the SE Portland yoga community – is currently in the midst of fundraising and designing their new building, which will strive to meet Living Building Challenge standards as they seek responsible construction and operating methods.

The 8,500-square-foot structure will include yoga and movement studios, an event space, a child care center for members, a café, a green roof and a wellness center that offers naturopathic and acupuncture care and massage therapy.

Please read more detailed information – including an interview with one of the owners – here.

I’m hoping to be witness to this process, and maybe even participate in it’s facilitation. Regardless, I’m very excited to see such a dynamic and interesting project come to life!

London’s Largest Living Wall Completed

The Rubens at the Palace Hotel in Victoria, London, has unveiled the city’s largest “living wall” – a vertical landscape, composed of 16 tons of soil and 10,000 plants, designed to reduce urban flooding. Taking two months to construct and covering a 350 square foot area, the 21 meter high wall will beautify the cityscape year round with seasonal flowers such as strawberries, butter cups and winter geraniums.

Awesome New Living Wall in San Diego, CA

My friend and peer Jim Mumford at Good Earth Plant Company/Greenscaped Buildings (San Diego) just completed this great-looking green wall (living wall) on the roof of the Westgate Hotel Downtown San Diego.

Gardening In Miniature

September 14, 2013

I’ve long had an interest in miniature container gardens, and have done a few of my own, but this woman kicks it up a notch. Such cool stuff here! If you or someone you know might like to have something like this for your home or office, please let me know…I’d be happy to create something special for you.
Gardening In Miniature

“Green” Street Art

August 5, 2013

I came across this on the InnerWebz and thought it was pretty cool…

Utilizing rooftops in a whole new way…

July 23, 2013

I’m already a big fan of ecoroofs and space utilization, but this Whole Foods rooftop veggie garden really kicks it up a notch. What a great project.
Here’s another video about the project.

May is Time to Plant Warm-season Crops, Edible Flowers, and Attract Pollinators

April 30, 2013

Warm temperatures are (pretty much) here to stay and you don’t have to worry about that frost. You may think it’s too late to grow all your favorite vegetables from seed, but warm May temperatures leave the soil perfect for sowing seeds. Warm soil allows for fast germination.

Beans:
Start planting both bush and pole beans now that the soil and air are warmed up. Try a continual 7-10 day sowing of different varieties. This will give you continual bean crops and not one large harvest with wasted crop.

Beets
Sow beets now for a fast, early summer treat.

Cabbage
Cabbage is one of the easier plants to grow in the garden. Select a variety that is right for your location (size and maturity length). Be sure to fertilize and water when cabbage head begins to form.

Carrots
Planting carrots by mid-July yields a fall crop that will keep in the garden until used.

Corn
One of the most rewarding and fast growing crops to grow. Corn is delicious when cooked only minutes after being pulled off the stalk. Try a small plot of corn, working your way to a large field of several varieties.

Cucumbers
Fast growing vine or bush cucumber plants can produce an abundance of cucumber fruits. Be careful to pick a variety for the space you have in your garden. Vine cucumbers can be the best tasting but need far more space than bush varieties.

Herbs:
Plant heat loving herbs like basil, oregano, thyme and sage.

Melons
Melons are some of the most rewarding plants to grow. Great for hot, long summers. A staple for summer picnics and family fun.

Peppers
Fresh, crisp peppers are a garden favorite. Peppers take up little space and can produce high yields when planted close together. Plant as many different varieties as possible. They come small, big, hot, mild, and an array of different colors. Start seeds indoors for best results.

Summer Squash
Yum! Summer squash sowing in May will lead to fresh squash and zucchini in July and August.

Tomatoes
The most popular garden vegetable. Growing tomatoes is not only fun but treats you to some of the best tasting fruits in the world. Tomatoes come in many colors, shapes, taste, and sizes. Grow a few varieties every year to find your favorites! You may want to think about buying transplants in May.

Native Plant Nurseries around Portland

April 8, 2013

Thinking about utilizing native plants in your new garden? Want to add some natives to an existing landscape? Here’s a list of some local nurseries that offer a nice selection plants indigenous to the Northwest.

  • Alder View Natives, Wilsonville
  • Bosky Dell Natives, West Linn http://www.boskydellnatives.com
  • Circle S, Woodland WA
  • Creekside Nursery, Portland
  • Drake’s 7 Dees
  • Extra Perennial Nursery, Hillsboro
  • Krueger’s Tree Farms, North Plains
  • Livingscape Nursery, Vancouver http://livingscapenursery.com
  • Loen Nursery, Sherwood
  • Nothing But Northwest Natives, Battle Ground WA http://nothingbutnorthwestnatives.com
  • Portland Nursery http://portlandnursery.com

Recycling Facts!

March 28, 2013

Here is a nice list of very interesting facts about recycling.
Educate yourself…you’d be surprised to learn about how much waste we produce, and what we can do to minimize our footprint.

A Creative Take on a "Edible Rain Garden"

September 23, 2012

Using (ideally) reclaimed/salvaged rain gutters, this creative application is a space-saving and fun way to grow vegetables. Installing them at slightly alternating angles allows rainwater to effectively trickle down from one to the other, irrigating with no effort required! Of course, in the drier months they will need supplemental irrigation, but this can be done with water harvested and stored in a rain barrel (or from grey water re-use).
Even in the “off-season”, this type of installation has a quirky, artistic aesthetic, especially if painted in a way that ties them into the rest of the landscape design.

Bio-Dynamic Pools!

This is a new concept to me, but I love the idea. Using plant material and other natural means to create a low-impact, environmentally-responsible swimming pool. No need for chlorine or other harmful/abrasive chemicals. Plus the aesthetic impact is amazing: plants growing out of the pool!
http://www.biotop-natural-pool.com/system.html

Ginkgo biloba: An amazing plant for many reasons

August 12, 2012

For many years, Ginkgo biloba has been one of my favorite trees. The unique shape and hue of the leaves, the dramatic fall color, and it’s interesting history all play a part in my love affair with this beautiful organism.

Some interesting facts about Ginkgo (The Maidenhair Tree) can be read about here:
http://www.classicalchinesemedicine.org/2010/03/ginkgo-cultural-background-and-medicinal-usage-in-china/

Awesome Green Wall project in Columbia

This small boutique hotel in Bogota, Columbia recently installed a 4,000 sf Green Wall, which uses mostly native plants.
http://www.greenroofs.com/projects/pview.php?id=1409

Front Yard Veggie Gardens

July 9, 2012

We need to see more of this! Get rid of your grass…grow a garden instead!

 

8 Awesome Examples of Solar Architecture

June 18, 2012

I especially like the waterfall project in Rio. Awesome!

http://revmodo.com/2012/05/04/8-stunning-examples-of-solar-architecture/

Hilton in Pattaya, Thailand

May 26, 2012

Great design here (the new Hilton Hotel in Pattaya, Thailand). I love the birds-eye aerial shot. You really get a sense of the organic cohesion that is happening.
Hilton Pattaya landscape

amazing Yugoslavian architectural relics suggest alien landscape

May 6, 2011

This is a mind-blowing collection of photographs featuring abandoned architectural sites in Yugoslavia. These unique and desolate creations seem to suggest a sort of other-worldly type of influence:
http://www.cracktwo.com/2011/04/25-abandoned-soviet-monuments-that-look.html

Herbal Remedies being censored in the EU

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-1382135/Herbal-medicines-banned-EU-directive-comes-force.html