Solving Stormwater

To many eyes, plants look too simple to do anything but plants can remove most of our stormwater, lower council spending by 20% and store carbon, and everyone gets more real green-space too. But tradition and fear of the unknown mean few are rushing to do this. Also it is SO easy to dismiss planting... Continue Reading →

Innovating Streets

The NZ Government via NZTA has more than NZD 7 million available to councils of all sizes "for projects using 'tactical urbanism' techniques such as pilots, pop-ups and interim treatments that make it safer and/or easier for people to move around or access community spaces". It's about creating more people-friendly spaces in our towns and... Continue Reading →

Growplan, Going Strong

Landscape architect Nigel Cowburn's still hard at work. He's spending his time at home due to the New Zealand Covid-19 lockdown but this in itself is nothing new - his office was already at home. The difference is that he isn't driving out to sites looking at jobs. Don't hesitate to call or email Nigel... Continue Reading →

Plants As Partners

Conventional stormwater capacity is under pressure from intensive residential, commercial and industrial development. Most surfaces that aren't built on are paved producing large volumes of runoff in downpours. Extreme weather events overwhelm over-burdened systems culminating in catastrophic flooding. Councils and developers in New Zealand by-and-large still take the traditional engineered approach to stormwater design, having... Continue Reading →

Growplan Green

On Sunday 01 March Nigel had a stall at the Hawthorn Den fete at Waikaka in Southland. He went along to meet people and share the range of landscape design services he offers as a Landscape Architect. The weather was fine and the big Growplan-green umbrella provided welcome shade. Click on photo to enlarge. Nigel... Continue Reading →

Sustainability Part II – Nature’s Rights

Does sustainability mean anything in a business context, or is it just another overused catchword like prefixing all pronouncements with 'Green'?  Our technical culture enables us to borrow from other times and places. This is often couched in weasel words; instead we should say what we mean and hold business and the state to the same... Continue Reading →

All Fragmentation is Loss

When we change nature (whether forest, pond, stream or meadow) by, for instance: Adding a persistent toxic chemical, e.g. a herbicide, arsenic from treated timber, asbestos from brake linings... Removing a species permanently Felling trees and/or opening the edge of a closed woodland, we harm it in ways that will not self-repair within a human... Continue Reading →

What is Sustainability really?

It's an in-depth consideration of whatever you're doing; developing land, building a house, planting a garden..., and then proceeding so you can do it again and again without impacting the Earth. Many modern processes externalize effects and costs, moving them to other places and to the future. Starting with a place to think this through... Continue Reading →

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