Landscape Architect & Specifier News

APR 2017

LASN is a photographically oriented, professional journal featuring topics of concern and state-of-the-art projects designed or influenced by registered Landscape Architects.

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90 Landscape Architect and Specifier News I n f o r m a t i o n R e q u e s t # 5 8 5 CLASS Fund Research Grant Award The California Landscape Architectural Student Scholarship Fund, or CLASS Fund, has awarded the 2016-17 CLASS Fund grant award to professor Michael Volk and his research team from the University of Florida department of landscape architecture. The project, "Incorporating Climate Change into Landscape Architectural Projects and Practice," will examine the roles of landscape architects in mitigating climate change and alternative design and implementation practices in Florida. Using data from a recent survey on attitudes and perceptions of Florida landscape architects toward climate change, Professor Volk's study will identify information gaps and possible barriers to adoption of landscape design practices for climate change, and potential strategies to mitigate and adapt to the impacts of climate change on the built and natural environment. Other members on the research team include professor Gail Hansen, department of environmental horticulture, University of Florida, and Belinda Nettles, PhD candidate, Center for Landscape Conservation Planning & Levin College of Law Conservation Clinic, University of Florida. "Landscape architects have a significant role in addressing climate change in their work and practice, and many landscape architects are already doing so," noted professor Michael Volk. "We greatly appreciate the support of the CLASS Fund and CELA in this project, and look forward to continuing our work to advance knowledge in this area." CLASS Fund has a cooperative relationship with CELA (Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture) involving the solicitation and review of research proposals related to the landscape industry. The one-year grant award is for a maximum of $25,000. Left: Weed seeds readily stick to plastic growing containers and germinate around the edge when old containers are reused. Note the brown bittercress seeds sticking to the container sides, and the germinating weeds. PHOTO: JIM OWEN AT VIRGINIA TECH UNIVERSITY Hot Bath Prescribed for Weed Seeds Hoticulturist James Altland and his colleagues at Agricultural Research Service in Wooster, Ohio are documenting the temperature and exposure time for killing weed seeds with hot water or steam. Weed seed control in greenhouses is a problem because herbicides are not safe for use. Reuse of plastic propagation trays and containers exacerbates the problem, as seeds of many weeds, e.g., bittercress (Cardamine flexuosa) and creeping woodsorrel (Oxalis corniculata), stick to the plastic growing containers and the weed seeds get reintroduced into new plant production when the containers are reused. "Soil solarization" is one way to reduce weed seeds and other pests, however, this requires covering the ground with plastic to heat soil over several days or weeks. How long it takes depends on the heat range, which has been established between 104°F and 158°F. Steam or hot-water will also kill weed seeds. In Oregon, some nurseries have adopted the Grower Assisted Inspection Program to prevent the spread of the pathogen Phytophthora ramorum. They report that dipping reused plastic plant trays in a water tank at 176°F for 15 minutes kills P. ramorum on reused plastic, and has also been effective in reducing bittercress populations. Professor Michael Volk of the University of Florida is the recipient of a research grant to study how landscape architects can mitigate climate change.

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