ASLA online learning opportunities for landscape architects

ASLA webinars

ASLA (American Society of Landscape Architects) is pleased to announce five new Professional Practice Network (PPN) Online Learning live presentations: September 16 – 26, 2013. The PPN Chairs have provided a variety of topics from speakers across the United States. Upcoming presentations are listed below, but full descriptions are located on the PPN Online Learning website.
Free to everyone, but space is limited, so register soon!

The ones in plum will be those of particular interest to this group.

Monday, September 16 at 2pm (eastern)
What’s More Efficient, ET (Weather Stations) or Soil Moisture Sensors in Controlling Irrigation Systems?

Hosted by the Water Conservation PPN

Tuesday, September 17 at 2pm (eastern)
Healthy Youth Development Through Design

Hosted by the Children’s Outdoor Environments PPN

Thursday, September 19 at 4pm (eastern)
Bioretention Policies, Practice, and Research

Hosted by the Water Conservation PPN

Wednesday, September 18 at 2pm (eastern)
Landscape Architecture and Healthcare Reform: What the Accountability Care Act Means for Your Healthcare Project

Hosted by the Healthcare and Therapeutic Design PPN

Thursday, September 26 at 4pm (eastern)
SCUP Excellence in Planning and Landscape Architecture 2013 Awards
Hosted by the Campus Planning and Design PPN

Professional development hours (PDHs) will be available free to registered ASLA members. Nonmembers can receive PDHs for a nominal fee.

For more information and to register, visit the PPN Online Learning website.
Free to everyone, but space is limited.
Professional development hours (PDHs) will be available free to registered ASLA members. Nonmembers can receive PDHs for a nominal fee.

ASLA 2013 conference – Early bird deadline ends 6/14


The American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) annual meeting and EXPO will take place from November 15 -18 in Boston, Massachusetts. This year’s theme is “Gaining Ground.”

Of particular interest to Therapeutic Landscapes Network members will be the following sessions, though many more may be as well.

Birthright, by Stephen KellertThe general session will be a talk by notable author and scholar Stephen Kellert, “Biophilic Design: People and Nature in the Modern World.”
Saturday, 11/16, 8-9 am
Our connection to the natural world is part of our biological inheritance. Dr. Stephen R. Kellert, a pioneer in biophilia, will set forth an account of nature’s powerful influence on the quality of our lives. Weaving scientific findings together with personal experiences and perspectives, Dr. Kellert explores how our humanity is deeply contingent on the quality of our connections to the natural world. He is the Tweedy Ordway Professor Emeritus of Social Ecology and Senior Research Scholar at the Yale University School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. An award-winning author, educator, and environmental scientist, Dr. Kellert has written more than 150 books and articles and has also completed a 60-minute documentary video, “Biophilic Design: the Architecture of Life.” I highly recommend his new book Birthright.

Landscapes of Therapy at Boston Area Teaching Hospitals
Field Session (tour), Friday, 11/15, all day
Boston-area teaching hospitals are world leaders in patient-centered care, research, and treatment. Visit five recent therapy gardens designed for these institutions to fit in tight urban situations: two interior gardens, two roof-deck gardens, and one waterfront site designed both for therapy and rising sea levels. Yes, this is the same day as the 3 education sessions listed below. Happens every year. We wish ASLA could do something about this but apparently, they can’t.

Translating Research into Restoration: Exterior Environments for Wounded Warriors
Friday, 11/15, 8:30-10 am
Presenters: Landscape architects Brian Bainnson, Connie Roy Fisher, Jerry Smith
This session will look at healing gardens and sustainable sites designed to help heal veterans with PTSD and provide respite for their families and caregivers. Peer-reviewed research, design guidelines, and specific design strategies will focus on three of the country’s most prestigious military medical centers.

Therapeutic, Restorative, or Enabling: Are All Healing Gardens Designed the Same?
Friday, 11/15, 10:30-12 pm
Presenters: Landscape architects Jack Carman and Elizabeth Messer Diehll
As the prevalence of healing gardens grows so do the terms used to describe them, making it difficult to make valid distinctions. Using existing examples, this session presents a framework that describes the purpose, design focus, and potential users of each type of healing garden.

Playing It Too Safe?
Friday, 11/15, 1:30-3 pm
With Philip Howard of Common Good, Julian Richer and Harry Harbottle of Richter Spielgeräte, and Jane Clark Chermayeff of Architectural Playground Equipment, Inc.
Are playgrounds today giving children what they need? This panel for landscape architects, project managers, and advisers will balance risk and safety in planning play spaces and consider how play environments have changed in the 21st century, from both the European and American practitioners’ perspectives.

Healthcare and Therapeutic Design Professional Practice Network meeting
Sunday, 11/17 , 9:15-10:45 am

Children’s Outdoor Environments Professional Practice Network meeting
Sunday, 11/17 , 3:15-4:00 pm (I think this time may be incorrect, as the PPN meetings are usually 1.5 hours)

For more information and to register, visit ASLA’s conference page.


ASLA Professional Practice Networks Online Learning

Budding redbud. Photo from

Budding redbud. Photo from

The first of a bi-annual series of Online Learning webinars hosted by the American Society of Landscape Architects’ Professional Practice Networks (PPNs) starts on Monday, 4/4/13. These distance learning opportunities are scheduled during the same week, creating a “virtual conference.” Future series will focus on a common theme, while this inaugural event allowed each PPN to determine their own topic ideas.  Webinars will be recorded for future viewing opportunities, but this live event offers the chance to interact with presenters with Q&A time during each presentation.

Presentations are free to everyone, but space is limited.  Recordings will be posted on the ASLA webinar page in April, so check back then to see the presentations that are full.

Professional development hours (PDHs) will be available to registered ASLA members; include your member number on the registration form. Number of PDHs vary for each presentation, so check the descriptions below for details.

PPN Online Learning Series: Spring Kick-off Event
March 4-14, 2013

The following are webinars still open for registration. Others that might be of interest to our Network (such as “Welcome to Planet Earth: Designing Nature into Early Childhood”; “Urban Agriculture – Beyond Community Gardens”; and “How Communities are Embracing Sustainable Site Development”) are already full, but you can check the webinar page (link above) in April to listen.

Bridging the Landscape of Autism

Hosted by the Healthcare and Therapeutic Design PPN
Friday, March 8 at 11:00 am (eastern)
1.5 PDH credits (LA CES/HSW)

Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) are increasingly present today, and this session will clarify the many related opportunities and obstacles this presents in place-making. It will suggest best-management practices to accommodate and integrate individual needs in private and public spaces during analysis and conceptual design.

Julie Sando, Founder, Autistically Inclined & Natural Play Therapy
Brian Johnston, Founder, Square Root Design Studio
Tara Vincenta, Principle and Founder, Artemis Landscape Architects, Inc.
Vince Lattanzio, President, Carducci Landscape Architects

Partnering for Healthy Communities

Hosted by the Parks and Recreation PPN
Date and Time: Monday, March 4 at 3:00 pm (Eastern)
1.0 PDH credits (LA CES/HSW)

In an economy where resources are limited, joint use agreements are becoming a platform for creating healthy collaborations. Establishing joint use agreements between schools, parks and other local organizations allow facilities to be utilized by more members of the community and provide community members with increased opportunities for physical activity. These partnerships provide mutual benefits to all parties involved and improve community livability; however these partnerships do require work in resolving differences.

Craig D. Bronzan, Director City of Brentwood Parks and Recreation
Patty Boyd, RD MPH with the Tri-County Health Department in Greenwood Village, CO

Soak it up: Placemaking through Sustainable Water Strategies in the Desert Southwest

Hosted by the Water Conservation PPN
Date and Time: Friday, March 8 at 1:00 pm (eastern)
1.0 PDH credits (LA CES/HSW)

Focusing upon urban environments in the desert southwest, this presentation will discuss water’s influence upon land and people through time, modern development’s disconnection from natural water systems and how sustainable water harvesting can reinforce the importance of this vital resource our ecosystems and future are dependent upon.  Various water sources will be identified and passive and mechanical harvesting methods will be demonstrated both for irrigation and water feature elements.  

Todd Briggs

Multicultural Design: Creating Landscapes that Welcome and Serve Everyone Equally

Hosted by the Women In Landscape Architecture PPN
Date and Time: Tuesday, March 5 at 1:00 pm (eastern)
1.0 PDH credits (LA CES/HSW)

Research shows that visitors’ cultural and economic background impact how they experience landscapes. Yet, most landscape architects in America design for a single ‘universal’ experience that reflects white middle class culture.  What would change if paths, picnic tables, lawns and groves were designed from a diversity of cultural and class perspectives. Could we create parks as diverse and rich as America itself?

Steve Rasmussen Cancian


ASLA 2012 – Several events related to health and well-being

Banner Good Samaritan Health Center. Photo by Brice Bradley

Banner Good Samaritan Health Center. Photo by Brice Bradley

Time flies, and it seems to fly even faster in the summer. Fall is just around the corner, and seems to be a big conference season, so stay tuned for more blog posts on events. Many thanks to Filiz Satir who has been helping with these events postings.

Over the past few years, we have seen an increase in the number of education sessions, tours, and even keynote speakers (e.g., Dick Jackson AND Esther Sternberg in 2010) at ASLA conferences (and Healthcare Design, and Environments for Aging, etc.). I think it’s an encouraging indication of the growing interest in landscapes for human health and well-being, and also a credit to leaders and members of ASLA’s Healthcare and Therapeutic Design Professional Practice Network.


Upcoming Event: ASLA Conference in Washington, D.C.

Maximilian Sunflower photo by Henry Domke

Maximilian Sunflower photo by Henry Domke,

American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) Annual Meeting
September 10–13, 2010 (with a before-the-meeting tour on 9/9 – see below)
Washington, D.C., Walter E. Washington Convention Center

I can’t believe it’s only about a month away! Here are some events during (and even before) the 2010 ASLA conference that may be of interest to members of the TLN. I must say, I’m encouraged by the number and breadth of the events germane to our interests. Encouraging, indeed. Hope to see you there!

Thursday, 9/9
Informal Walking Tour of Restorative Landscapes
An informal walking tour, organized by members of the Healthcare and Therapeutic Design and Children’s Outdoor Environments PPNs, including the Vietnam Memorial, the USDA People’s Garden, the rooftop garden and labyrinth at the American Psychological Association, the Butterfly Garden, and the garden at the Native American Museum. See this TLN Blog post for more details, and/or visit the HTD PPN’s social networking page.

Friday, 9/10

Public Parks: The Key to Livable Communities (Education Session, 8:30-10:00)
Over the last 150 years, public parks have become an important part of the complex, modern metropolitan infrastructure on which entire regions depend for their physical, social, and mental health. They accommodate habitats and ecosystems, help to improve air and water quality and maintain habitable temperatures, and provide a framework around which metropolitan development takes place. They are not preserved natural environments. They are human artifacts explicitly created for recreational purposes and have become integral components of metropolitan living.

Edible Landscapes: Growing Roots in the Urban Realm (Education Session, 10:30-12:00)
Edible landscapes are sprouting up in response to slow food movement and a greener lifestyle, fast becoming communal spaces and eco-destinations. These organic demonstration models also provide educational opportunities, such as to combat child obesity. This session will present case studies of the edible landscape movement, providing specific tools on planning, designing, funding, and constructing traditional and nontraditional approaches, including victory gardens, green roofs, and vertical farming.

A Higher Level of Inclusive Play: Trends in Playground Design (Education Session, 10:30-12:00)
This session will provide resources for designing parks and playgrounds that facilitate a higher level of inclusive play for physical accessibility, developmental appropriateness, and sensory-stimulating activity. The benefits of a variety of sensory activities for all children will be presented along with examples, including tips and strategies on how small to major changes make playgrounds welcoming, engaging, challenging, and therapeutic.  The session will include ideas on how to plan inclusive playgrounds that communities embrace with pride.

Partners in Health: USGBC, GGHC, SITES, and Healing Hospital Settings (Education Session, 3:30-5:00)
Hospital expansion often comes at the expense of green space, and there is a need to maximize the respite provided by the remaining outdoor areas. Currently, LEED accommodates density through green roofs and other strategies that may not improve outdoor respite. USGBC, the Green Guide for health care, and SITES are working to assure areas of respite are incorporated into healthcare facility design. Case studies for two LEED hospital projects will relate the effectiveness of existing respite functions to the proposed criteria, potential branding, and revenue benefits.

Connecting Children With Nature (Education Session, 3:30-5:00)
Children’s contact with nature is critical for their healthy development. Research shows that green environments support attentive functions, cooperative behavior, and physical health. But the lack of quality outdoor environments prevents children and families from receiving those health benefits. This session will discuss the latest research on the effects of contact with nature and the critical role landscape architects play in counteracting ADD and sedentary habits. Participants will understand how to create natural environments as a daily experience for children and families.

Saturday, 9/11

General Session speaker Majora Carter (8-9:30 a.m.)
This is exciting because it’s a general session, meaning that many many people will be attending, and it speaks to the growing interest in and acknowledgement of the connectedness between the built environment,, programming, and health:
“Environmental and urban planning advocate Majora Carter advises cities, foundations, universities, businesses, and communities around the world on unlocking their green-collar economic potential to benefit everyone. In 2001, she founded Sustainable South Bronx to achieve environmental justice through economically sustainable projects formed by community needs. Today, through the Majora Carter Group, LLC, her work simultaneously addresses public health, poverty alleviation, and climate change. She is currently working in the city of Detroit on a project to train residents to become “urban agriculture technicians” and to organize a market for selling the products throughout the greater Detroit area. Carter’s work has earned numerous awards including a MacArthur “Genius” Fellowship. She was named one of Essence magazine’s 25 Most Influential African-Americans and one of The New York Post’s Most Influential New York City Women. Newsweek named her one of “25 To Watch” in 2007 and one of the “century’s most important environmentalists” in 2008. She is a board member of the Wilderness Society and hosts a special National Public Radio series called “The Promised Land” and the Sundance Channel’s ‘Eco-Heroes.'”

Children’s Outdoor Environments Professional Practice Network meeting, 5:00-6:30 pm

Sunday, 9/12

General Session speaker Dr. Richard J. Jackson (8-9:30 a.m.)
And another great speaker! Yet more evidence of the turning tides:
“How does the physical environment in which we live affect our health? For years, evidence has linked adverse health outcomes with sprawling development. Dr. Richard J. Jackson is Professor and Chair of Environmental Health Sciences at the School of Public Health at the University of California, Los Angeles. A pediatrician and public health leader, he recently served as a professor at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and at the University of California, Berkeley. He served in many leadership positions with the California Health Department, including the highest, State Health Officer. For nine years he was Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC’s) National Center for Environmental Health in Atlanta. In 2005, he was recognized with the highest civilian award for U.S. government service, the Presidential Distinguished Executive Award. While in California, his work led to the establishment of the California Birth Defects Monitoring Program and state and national laws that reduced risks, especially to farm workers and to children, from dangerous pesticides. While at CDC, he established the national asthma epidemiology and control program and advanced the childhood lead poisoning prevention program. He instituted the current federal effort to “biomonitor” chemical levels in the U.S. population. He was the U.S. lead under several U.S. government efforts around health and environment in Russia, including radiation threats. In the late 1990s, he was the award-winning CDC leader in establishing the U.S. National Pharmaceutical Stockpile to prepare for terrorism and other disasters—which was activated on September 11, 2001. In 2006, he received the Breast Cancer Fund’s Hero Award and at the UC Berkeley 2007 Commencement, the School of Public Health graduate students recognized him as the Distinguished Teacher and Mentor of the Year. Dr. Jackson co-authored Urban Sprawl and Public Health, a 2004 book from Island Press. He has served on many environmental and health boars, as well as the Board of Directors of the American Institute of Architects.”

Inside the LA Studio With Ten Eyck Landscape Architects, Inc. (Education Session, 10:30-12:00)
Ten Eyck Landscape Architects is a member of the TLN’s Designers and Consultants Directory

Green Walls Research 2010: Growing Promise for the Vertical Landscape (Education Session, 10:30-12:00)
Vertical surfaces are providing new opportunities to meld science and landscape in the built environment. Findings from three North American studies describe opportunities to enhance designs with interior air bio-filtration using “living walls,” increase building energy efficiencies using green façades, and improve health and welfare through landscape applications.

Healthcare and Therapeutic Design Professional Practice Network meeting, 5:00-6:30 pm