P90505I am no designer. I am merely a horticulturist. I grow things, and I know how things should be grown in landscape situations.

My colleague Brent Green is a landscape designer, as well as a horticulturist. He knows how things should be grown in landscape situations too, but more importantly, he knows how to assemble the landscapes that they grow in. He creates the sort of landscapes that most people think that all horticulturists strive for. (A few pictures of his home garden can be found in a former article, as well as another similar article that it links to: https://tonytomeo.com/2019/04/06/six-on-saturday-brents-garden/ .)

Brent and I have two completely different sets of standards for landscape design, to say the least. His ideal landscapes are very lush and inviting, with abundant color and fragrance. Mine are very simple and structured, with abundant fruits and vegetables. He strives to bring the ambiance of wild jungles into very urban settings. I try to instill formality and structure into the forests. Yet, we both agree that landscapes must be functional.

That means that landscapes must work for those using them, whatever they are using them for. Almost all of Brent’s clients use their landscapes as extensions of their homes, so want them to function as such.

I do not design landscapes, but I do happen to work in some. Most are in public spaces, and some are comparable to athletic fields. They function very differently from those in residential situations.

The unexpected way that these three small redwoods are functioning in this landscape was just too amusing to not get a picture of. I have no idea where all these wet suits came from, or why they are hung in this particularly prominent location, but it is the last thing I expected to encounter here.


9 thoughts on “Utilitarian Landscape

    1. I got the picture first, and then had to write about it. It was just too funny to pass up. If you notice, the wet suits are hanging right over a walkway (so pedestrian traffic must go around). The walkway extends straight ahead of a driveway that is diverted to the left and right into parking lots, so this is the up front and central view when turning into the driveway from the main road.


    1. I like to see people using less electricity by hanging laundry in their home gardens, but not in a landscape that I work in. It really is the bet place for it though, where it is outside and out of the way. You know, in town, it is illegal to hang laundry where it can be seen from public roadways. A neighbor used to complain by mine, and police actually had to explain to him that it must be visible from the street, not by looking over the fence.


      1. I relocated, . . . and after I relocated, he telephoned to complain to me that the family who moved into my former home painted the bathroom after I had it painted the color that he had approved. It is a long story. While I lived there, I offered him whatever trees he wanted to obscure the view of my home with, but he did not want any trees, and did not want me to plant any more in my back yard either. He enjoyed complaining too much.


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