On Wednesday, we attended the lecture called, "Where the Wild Things Are: Designing with Native Plants" given by two landscape professionals Kyle Turoczi and Liza Turoczi from Woodbury, CT. They spoke about the importance of using native versus invasive plants when designing gardens and landscapes. They shared a portfolio of different projects they've completed using native plants, including the creation of many rain gardens. A reminder they had for us all, is to stay away from the two most commonly used invasive plants, the Barberry and the Burning Bush.
On day two, we listened to Lew French a stone designer from Vineyard Haven, MA, talk about the different types of stone and its use in landscapes. He emphasized the importance of using stone in its most natural form. By avoiding changes to the stone's face and shape as much as possible you are able to create a more natural and organic look to the landscape. Each type of stone has its own unique properties and function. When designing with stone it is important to consider these unique characteristics.
Lastly, on Friday morning we attended the intriguing lecture given by Brook Klausing from Brook Landscape, Inc in New York City and Rebecca McMackin from the Brooklyn Bridge Park in Brooklyn, New York. Both spoke about the unique idea of outdoor rooms. They explained the purpose of an outdoor room is to bring people from the inside to the outside while remaining in a comfortable surrounding. Each room is designed and built with a specific purpose and function, whether it be entertaining, relaxing, cooking or playing. All outdoor rooms must create the "lure of a sheltered corner", by creating a feeling of sides, a roof and a view. Along with designing with a purpose, outdoor rooms should consist of as many native plants as possible in order to expand the ecosystem and to create a healthier environment.
New England Grows provided our team with refreshing ideas and a great opportunity for networking.