Chicago Botanic Garden seminar: “Gardens for veterans & children with sensory processing & spectrum disorders.”

Chicago Botanic Garden. Photo by Allen Rokach,

Chicago Botanic Garden. Photo by Allen Rokach,

Chicago Botanic Garden Healthcare Garden Design Seminar Program:
Healing Through Nature: Healthcare Gardens for Veterans and Children with Sensory Processing and Spectrum Disorders

July 20 – 22 2012
Glencoe, IL

This is going to be SUCH a good seminar.

Returning veterans and children with sensory processing and spectrum disorders [such as Autism Spectrum Disorder] are two growing segments of the population that share a common root in disrupted neurological processing, which impacts all areas of life.

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is increasingly a public health crisis. The number of cases is expected to grow, ultimately exceeding 500,000 in the United States, according to a study by researchers at Stanford University. Autism spectrum disorders are estimated to affect one in every 110 children. The unique challenges facing both of these special populations, their families, and their communities necessitates discussion on how to best serve and create garden environments of care where education, treatment, and recreation take place.

This three-day seminar offers a broad approach for discussion on how healing gardens and therapeutic spaces can be instrumental in recovery, treatment, and stress reduction for special populations. The program will draw on the expertise of medical professionals, researchers, and practitioners to discuss the complexities of diagnosis and treatment. These sessions will be combined with case studies led by landscape architects currently working to implement healing spaces, along with discussions about design features and guidelines for therapeutic gardens that serve these special populations.

Visit for more details.

For past TLN Blog posts related to these topics, visit the following:

“Down to Earth”: 2012 Intn’l Geographical Union Congress

IGC Cologne 2012 - DOWN TO EARTH

32nd Congress meets in Cologne, Germany, August 26-30
With a session on “Plants, play and place.”

In August, the International Geographical Congress will meet in Cologne, Germany.  The IGU Congress will combine the traditional meetings of the IGC Commissions with a wide range of sessions addressing four key topics:

  • Global Change and Globalisation
  • Society and Environment
  • Risks and Conflicts
  • Urbanisation and Demographic Change

The 32nd Congress is about bringing research “Down to Earth.” Attending geographers will bring their wide-ranging perspectives and methodology on the four major themes, thereby contributing to the solutions of urgent scientific and socio-political issues.

The IGC is a congress of the International Geographical Union (IGU) that takes place every four years.  In 2004, the German Geographical Society (DGFG) together with the Geography Department of the University of Cologne successfully applied to host this year’s event.   To learn more about the IGC Congress visit them online.

Of particular interest to TLN members will be this session:
“Plants, play and place: Green Environments as a contribution to children´s healthy development,” with chairs Silvia D. Schäffer & Christina R. Ergler.  See for the full list of conference sessions.

Nature and Well-Being: Lecture series at the Bloedel Reserve

Reflecting pool, Bloedel Reserve. Photo by Henry Domke,

Reflecting pool, Bloedel Reserve. Photo by Henry Domke,

During June, Puget Sound’s Bloedel Reserve will put the spotlight on nature and well-being by hosting a series of lectures. Throughout the month, experts from diverse disciplines will explore the unique  relationship between nature and humans, and the healing and therapeutic qualities of landscapes and gardens.

Our founder Prentice Bloedel was fascinated with the relationship between people and plants, often writing eloquently on the subject, as he designed the gardens and landscapes of The Reserve. In June, we are bringing together experts from many disciplines to explore the unique relationship between nature and humans, and the healing and therapeutic qualities of landscapes and gardens.

The Bloedel Reserve is a public treasure that sits on 150 acres of natural woodlands and landscaped gardens just a short ferry ride away from downtown Seattle. In addition to interconnected paths, a Japanese garden, a moss garden, and a reflection pool, visitors will find the Bloedel’s former estate home. The Reserve was created by Prentice and Virginia Bloedel who resided on the property from 1951 until 1986. A man ahead of his time, Prentice Bloedel had an abiding interest in the relationship between people and the natural world. The primary mission of The Reserve is to provide a tranquil, restorative and emotionally evocative experience of nature.

See this past Guest TLN Blog Post by Sally Schauman for more on The Bloedel Reserve as a Therapeutic Landscape.

For more information on this month’s Lecture Series, visit The Bloedel Reserve web site.  Summer hours are extended for June, July and August: Tuesday and Wednesday, 10am-4pm; Thursday through Sunday, 10am-7pm. A short description of the lecture series follow. For a complete description of the talks and other classes at The Reserve, see the summer bulletin. To register for all the lectures that range from $10 to $15 per session, call 206-842-7631, or click on the Brown Paper Tickets.

The Bloedel Reserve Lecture Series for June is as follows:

Friday, June 8 at 4:30pm
Every Step a Healing Step (lecture & guided meditative walk)
Carolyn Scott Kortge, author, The Spirited Walker & Healing Walks for Hard Times

Sunday, June 10 at 2:00pm
The Restorative Power of Plants
Patty Cassidy, RHT, Horticultural Therapist & Gardener for Legacy Health Systems, Portland

Wednesday, June 13 at 10:00am
Healing Garden Designs
Daniel Winterbottom, RLA, FASLA, professor, Landscape Architecture, University of Washington

Thursday, June 14 at 2:00pm
Landscaping for Privacy: Innovative Ways to Turn Your Outdoor Space into a Peaceful Retreat
Marty Wingate, author & garden designer

Saturday, June 16 at 4:30pm
Therapeutic Design Adaptations for the Home Garden
Mark Epstein, registered landscape architect

Sunday, June 17 at 4:30pm
Art in Nature: The Therapeutic Effects of Nature Photography-A Personal Story
Charles Needle, photographer

Tuesday, June 19 at 10:00am
Leave No Child Inside: Reconnecting Children with Nature
Martin LeBlanc, founder, Children & Nature Network; Sr. VP, Islandwood

Friday, June 29 at 7:30pm
“Echoes of Creation” (Video screening & talk)
Jan Nickman, film & television director & cinematographer

Saturday, June 30 at 3:00pm
Restoration & Celebration — The Created World Around Us (lecture & guided meditative walk)
Christie Lynk, professor of psychology, Seattle University

3rd International Conference on Geographies of Children, Young People, and Families

Tour guide, Peru. Photo by Gabriela Aguero from the Children Youth and Environments Image Collection

Tour guide, Peru. Photo by Gabriela Aguero from the Children Youth and Environments Image Collection

Geographies of Children, Young People, and Families

July 11-12, 2012, Singapore

Children’s geographies is that branch of human (cultural) geography which deals with the study of the places of children’s lives. In July, the 3rd International Conference on Geographies of Children, Young People and Families will take place in Singapore at the National University of Singapore. The conference is open to academics, postgraduates, and locally-based youth and childhood practitioners and workers.

Human geography and its subset of specialties focus on cultural norms and components and their variation across spaces and places. It focuses on describing and analyzing the ways language, religion, economy, government, and other cultural phenomena vary or stay the same from one place to another, and on explaining how humans function spatially. As in many other social science disciplines, children have not been a particular focus of concern in geography. There is a considerable body of literature dating to the 1970s that includes studies of children spatial cognition and mapping abilities as well as their access to, use of and attachment to place.

To learn more about the conference, registration, and deadlines for paper submissions, visit the conference web site. The organizers will offer substantial fee reductions for postgraduate students and part-time employees. Specific queries may be sent to Tracey Skelton (, Conference Chair and Organiser.

“Healthy Environments Across Generations” this week!

Healthy Environments Across Generations conference

This week! Healthy Environments Across Generations conference

June 7 – 8, 2012
New York Academy of Medicine
New York City, NY

Addressing the environmental health aspects of how we live, eat, work, play, and socialize throughout life, and how we can transform our environments to promote health and prevent disease.

Please join us for a participatory conference that will bring together leaders and innovators from multiple sectors to:

  • Catalyze innovative approaches towards a systems-based approach to health across the lifespan;
  • Identify key intervention points and crosscutting environmental solutions to help reverse rising disease trajectories;
  • Develop intergenerational programmatic and policy recommendations/models that reflect an integrated approach to wellness; and
  • Create an ongoing network for collaboration to build healthier communities for all.

This conference is not an end unto itself, but a stepping stone for building a health-focused, multi-generational movement. We invite you to bring your energy and ideas to New York to help create our collective future.

Relevant to professionals and others working in or interested in the areas of health, food, nutrition, built environment, natural resources, environmental and economic justice, aging, or anyone interested in promoting health and preventing disease at all life stages.

Register now online at the New York Academy of Medicine website (


“Methodologies frame how we produce knowledge.” Guest post by Carol Krawczyk

Photo by Carol Krawczyk

Today’s guest blog post is by Carol Krawczyk, a landscape architect whom I first met at the 2010 ASLA Healthcare and Therapeutic Design Professional Practice Network tour of restorative landscapes in Washington, D.C. We have been corresponding ever since, and Carol has become an active member of the TLN groups on Linked In and Facebook, as well as the new TLN “Autism and Special Needs” subgroup on Linked In. Her insights about research, especially research methodologies, are important in this field, where we are placing more and more value on evidence-based design (EBD). Carol’s doctoral work focuses on environments for children with autism. If this is an area of interest, please join our Linked In group, and stay tuned for a page devoted to this topic on the TLN website. Many thanks, Carol!

Methodologies frame how we produce knowledge
By Carol Krawczyk, ASLA

Naomi Sachs and I began corresponding through this blog regarding the topic of research methodologies. Naomi had summarized an article on gardens and walkways about people who lived in senior assisted living facilities (ALFs). The author had observed seniors in two ALFs and had interviewed staff and therapists at these facilities in order to recommend important landscape design suggestions. I commented that while this research was important, it was still deficient because we –the readers, researchers and practitioners who would use this information – did not know why the senior citizens made decisions regarding which pathways to take, which seats to sit on, what views they particularly enjoyed, etc. So, at Naomi’s request, I’ll describe some of the research methods I like to use and the reasons why.


The TLN Recommends: Garden books for inspiration

Healing garden books for inspiration

If you’re still looking for the perfect gift for someone special (including yourself), here are some recommendations for beautiful books with a healing garden them that are sure to inspire you and your giftees to create beautiful, meaningful, nurturing spaces. These are all books that I own and refer to again and again. There are more academic and educational books out there, which are listed on the TLN’s References page. When you buy from any of the Amazon links on this post, you’ll be nurturing the Therapeutic Landscapes Network as well. Through the Amazon Associates program, the TLN receives a percentage of each book sale. This is true for Amazon purchase at any time of the year, so please bookmark the link and use it when you shop there. Of course, if you can find the books locally, all the better.

This is the third year for TLN Blog book recommendations, and I have a couple of new ones to add to the list. The first is Sharon Danks’ Asphalt to Ecosystems: Design Ideas for Schoolyard Transformation. Although this book is not so much geared to home gardeners, it’s so inspiring that it deserves a place on this list. It’s a beautifully illustrated guide for turning the traditional school ground’s slab of asphalt into edible gardens, wildlife habitats, and vibrant creative spaces. Cheryl Charles, Co-Founder and President of the Children & Nature Network, has this to say about it: “An inspiring, important, and practical resource. Grounded in experience and loaded with photographs to illustrate the concepts, this book is an invaluable tool for all of us who are working to reconnect children and nature where they live, learn and play.”


Engaging Our Grounds – Int’l Green Schoolyard Conference

Berkeley Adventure Playground, Berkeley, CA. Photo by SharonDanks

Berkeley Adventure Playground, Berkeley, CA. Photo by SharonDanks

Engaging Our Grounds
2011 International Green Schoolyard Conference
September 16–18, 2011
Berkeley & San Francisco, California

I would so love to go to this conference.

The green schoolyard movement is growing rapidly and flourishing around the world.  Schools near and far are re-imagining their grounds, replacing their extensive paved surfaces with a vibrant mosaic of outdoor learning and play opportunities. Schools in many different countries are leaders in this field, finding innovative ways to weave curricula into their landscapes, diversify their recreational offerings, enhance their local ecology, and reflect their unique location and cultural context.

We are at the forefront of a new paradigm that blends education, ecology, and urban sustainability.  We invite you to join us and become an important part of this exciting movement by registering and supporting this ground-breaking event.

Participate in the first International Green Schoolyard Conference held in the United States—an exciting opportunity to learn about cutting edge schoolyards and school gardens, meet like-minded colleagues from around the world, share ideas, tour fantastic local school grounds (including the Berkeley Adventure Playground, pictured above), and get inspirational ideas for your own community.

Engaging Our Grounds will bring together leading green schoolyards practitioners from the United States and other countries to share the latest trends and innovations, case studies, best practices, and creative thinking in green schoolyard design, maintenance, curricula, advocacy, and funding partnerships. The conference will include a resource and networking fair, keynote presentations by visionary leaders of the school ground movement from Canada, England, Germany, Japan, and Sweden; tours of outstanding local school grounds; and networking time.

Learn more and register at

Thanks to Sharon Danks, conference organizer and author of the terrific new book Asphalt to Ecosystems: Design Ideas for Schoolyard Transformation, for this information and these images.

National Children & Youth Garden Symposium

American Horticultural Society 2011 National Children & Youth Garden SymposiumFrom the American Horticultural Society website:

Gardens provide endless opportunities for unleashing kids’ creative sides while also helping them learn about the world around them. Discover innovative ways to mine this potential at the 2011 Symposium, where we will dig into both the art and science of gardening (spade not required).

This year’s Symposium hosts also reflect this theme, bringing together the educational resources of 4-H Children’s Garden at Michigan State University and the artistry of Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park. They will provide the perfect location for you to pick up new tools, resources, activities, skills, and inspiration to take back to the youth in your communities and schools.

Come learn how to create and use gardens to provide dynamic environments for experimentation, social engagement, self-expression, and connection to the natural world. Hear from students, their teachers, and national experts about the vital role gardens can play in the lives of today’s youth.


Child Friendly Asia Pacific International conference

Photo courtesy of Child Friendly Asia Pacific Network,

Photo courtesy of Child Friendly Asia Pacific Network,

“Engaging Children,” the 2nd International Conference of the Child Friendly Asia Pacific Network, will be held this year in Surakarta City, Indonesia from 6/30 – 7/2/11. In haste, I am copying and pasting. This announcement was orginally posted on the Children, Youth and Environments Forum by Tim Gill of Rethinking Childhood, Looks like a great conference!

The 2nd Child Friendly Asia Pacific International conference, through the
generous support of the Indonesian governments Ministry for Woman’s
Empowerment and Child Protection will be held in Surakarta City, Indonesia
in late June. The focus of the conference will be on engaging children
including supporting the role of children as active citizens and working
with children to evaluate the quality of their environments. In addition to
formal conference presentations delegates will have the opportunity to meet
and engage in hands-on research activities with local children in the city,
take field trips, be a dinner guest of the Minister of Woman’s Empowerment
and Child Protection and enjoy a cultural night with the Mayor of Surakarta

Keynote speakers over the three-days include:

Dr. Judith Ennew, Researcher with the NGO Knowing Children, Bangkok,
Thailand, and co-author Children as Active Citizens

Professor Roger Hart, Co-Director, Children Environments Research Group,
City University of New York and author of the seminal UNICEF publication
Children’s Participation

Professor Karen Malone, Researcher, University of Western Sydney, CFAP
Network Chair Professor Ricardo Henriques, State Secretary of Social Welfare
and Human Rights, State of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and Professor Economics
Science at Universidade Federal Fluminense

In addition to the main program and presentations, child friendly city
delegates from across the globe a special two-day symposium on Children and
Risk in Natural Disasters will be chaired by Dr Julie Rudner and Dr Kumi
Tashiro with panel members from Japan, Indonesia and New Zealand speaking on
current activities in these countries to support children during and in the
recovery of natural disasters. An executive meeting for CFAP as well as a
special session on the CFAP accreditation program that will include panel
presentations from key staff in regional UNICEF offices will also be held.
Themed sessions include: Engaging children’s views or Planning for and
with children, and the special symposium Session: Children, Risk and Natural

Conference Fee: $500 AUD (includes field trip, all lunches and dinners on
both nights).

Visit their website for more details.