UofAL-Huntsville - Tree Campus USA

lucky_pDecember 9, 2013

Check out the linked article below. Well-deserved accolades for an insightful fellow and his long-range plan.

While he's rarely seen here these days, his lovely bride is a frequent contributor here ;>).

RR was one of my very first 'cyber-friends' here at the GardenWeb forums, when I first found it, way back around 1996.
Through the years, I've enjoyed his UAH Grounds website, with his descriptions and performance profiles of various trees he's installed around the campus.

Still hope to make a stop in Huntsville one of these days to see it for myself...

Here is a link that might be useful: UAH - Tree Campus USA

This post was edited by lucky_p on Mon, Dec 9, 13 at 15:09

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So, is he your cousin in law? Did you become friends with RR and set him up with Rhizo??? Inquiring minds want to know...

"No one will ever know if a certain tree will actually grow here unless they try it"

If GW was capable of having signatures for users, this would be mine! (and maybe Poaky's, too haha)

It would be a dream to pull off the entire venture like he did. Education and beauty. Nice work.

    Bookmark   December 9, 2013 at 3:55PM
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gardener365(5b Illinois USA)

We're all doing it J..... he just had a bit more space! : )

And congratulations to him on so many levels.


    Bookmark   December 9, 2013 at 5:56PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Thanks, cuz 'n Lucky, for mentioning this! Robert is very happy about it and is hopeful that the publicity will help him fight the encroaching cookie cutter architecture of this rapidly growing campus.

I think that we need to visit Don Shadow soon for some more trees!

Lucky and I call each other 'cousin ', but we're not related, lol. We haven't even met in person though we've all been friends for a long time.

I AM Robert's honest to goodness wife, though......:-)

    Bookmark   December 9, 2013 at 8:25PM
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LOL well played then!! Had me convinced hahaha

I have seen through a friend how a lovely campus with diverse LARGE mature trees can be sacrificed for new building additions and then landscaped with 1000 copies of the same non native elm. Parts of the U of Ark campus are just breathtaking and then you get to the new parts and its just like "What the heck were they thinking? This doesn't vibe with the rest of the campus' plantings at all!" Makes one wonder about the long term plans for the remaining survivor trees...

    Bookmark   December 10, 2013 at 10:21AM
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A very much deserved honor for your husband, rhizo! You two are a formidable horticultural team. I can vouch that "you are Robert's honest to goodness wife" because I was a guest at your South Carolina Low Country wedding. Happy Holidays!

    Bookmark   December 11, 2013 at 1:14PM
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Embothrium(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

Landscape architecture is influenced by trends same as architecture, interior design, garment fashions etc.. Apart from that, all it would take would be for a campus to erect a bunch of modern, minimalistic buildings for a simple-scape of one kind of tree, one kind of shrub and so on to be drawn up and installed - so that the style of planting was thematically consistent with the architecture.

    Bookmark   December 11, 2013 at 2:06PM
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arktrees(6b NW Arkansas)

But, that wasn't what happened though. They put in an ornate gate at one location, and then planted a much of single selection of Lacebark Elm. In fact there were 5-6 MAJOR construction projects ongoing at one time. Many removing large mature trees (i.e. 80-100' Norway Spruce, 30"+ caliper Oak, 30' Ginkgo), and in every case (minus exactly 4 trees) the same crappy Lacebark Elm was replanted if anything but grass was planted at all. BEYOND ridiculous. Should have taken the money spend on the Landscape Architect and spent it on proper planting. Whatever the cost was for the LA, it was too much. Bunch of dogs taking a %#% on campus would have looked just about as good.


    Bookmark   December 11, 2013 at 2:50PM
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Is it possible to become good friends on the internet without actually meeting in person? After reading this, I'm thinking the answer is yes. Very nice and it looks like a place to search out if I'm ever down your way.

    Bookmark   December 14, 2013 at 11:43PM
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viburnumvalley(z5/6 KY)

It would be interesting - for the remarks pertaining to the University of Arkansas campus plantings and assessed blame on one design profession - to actually be researched and a complete answer determined.

More likely, there are high-ranking officials at the UoA that want what they want, and resultant tree plantings receive the level of respect so scatalogically referred to above. The respect accorded the old mature trees summarily sacrificed lend credence to such an opinion.

Rather than lambast a landscape architect about which you know nothing, why not excoriate the very nurseryman/horticulturist that grew these lame elms, or the landscape contractor who purchased and installed them?

There is plenty of blame to go around, but I'll go back and put it square on the citizenry of Arkansas. If you don't like what you get, RAISE HELL and see that it changes. Razorback sports ought not be all that has a solid and vocal fan base in your fair state.

    Bookmark   December 15, 2013 at 9:34PM
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Mmm, but isn't someone ultimately responsible for the plantings? It seems it would be rather easy to figure out who and how these desicions were made. Wouldn't a LA at least play an important role in this decision?

    Bookmark   December 15, 2013 at 10:01PM
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viburnumvalley(z5/6 KY)

As a member of the profession, I'd like to say yes - that's how it should be.

Given campus politics that I'm intimately aware of - as well as plenty of other sites and occasions - that answer is "not really".

Consider the instance where the primary tree selected to be planted at our seat of government was proposed to be done by general voting...

    Bookmark   December 15, 2013 at 11:12PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Basic, yes....it is VERY possible to develop close internet friendships! It's borne from a mutual interest and is nurtured by respect, humor, shared interests, etc.

Robert's situation at UAH is unique. Though the university has hired assorted landscape architects and architects, he has managed to insert himself in much of the planning for new development. He's thrown out numerous worthless designs, has made hundreds of plant switches, and has kicked out a couple of incompetent landscape contractors.

It can be a very political and rancorous atmosphere when it comes to planning the future of a growing university campus. Robert has managed to survive several administrations with his 'bossiness ' in tact, lol. After he retires, it will be quite different.

    Bookmark   December 16, 2013 at 6:07AM
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I count rhizo and Robert as family and friends, though we've never met (though we have spoken on the phone once).
I have others whom I've never met in person, but have developed lasting ties with - and have had numerous mutual exchanges of information and plant materials with - over the years; some of these came about from encounters here at the GW forums, others through NAFEX, NNGA, etc.

Granted, there are some that I just tolerate (and I'm sure some have the same feeling for me), others that I'm sure we'd quickly share a hug or hearty handshake - and some giggles and guffaws in short order - just like the old friends that we are.

    Bookmark   December 16, 2013 at 6:04PM
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viburnumvalley(z5/6 KY)

At least until the topic of discussion branches out...

    Bookmark   December 16, 2013 at 10:20PM
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Oh no, not the dreaded Liquidambar!

    Bookmark   December 17, 2013 at 9:34AM
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    Bookmark   December 18, 2013 at 10:02AM
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