Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Landscape Introduction

To begin this project, I met the team (architect, owners, builder) on site. The footprint of the new home was already determined by the City's setbacks as well as the stream buffer required. The notable plants left on the site were a triple trunked 174" circumference Deodora Cedar and a majestic Sycamore, growing by the stream. Otherwise, the site was bare earth with only invasive English Ivy, Chinese Privet and Bamboo growing along the west property line.

At our meeting we discussed the client's program and budget. It was simple: meet all the LEED specifications for the landscape and the budget was minimal.

This was a first for me. How was I going to create a landscape that meets the specifications for a sustainable site (what does that mean?) with very little money?

Going through the LEED for Homes Program Rating System turned out to be quite an educational experience.

The relevant sections in the LEED work book for landscaping and the program for the project are listed below and I will offer further blog posts how we accomplished them:
• Sustainable Sites-Landscaping,
• Shading of Hardscapes,
• Surface Water Management,
• Water Efficiency and
• Energy and Atmosphere.

- Lynn Saussy, Landscape Architect

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