Skip to main content

Many Ways to Practice: Shaping the Future of Public Gardens

LAF hosts live webinars in which guest presenters share innovative work and discuss timely issues. The recorded webinars are archived on LAF's website, and many can be viewed on demand to earn continuing education credits through LA CES. LAF is able to make these resources freely available thanks to the financial support of individuals like you. If you find this webinar valuable, please consider making a donation to help us cover hosting and administrative costs. To learn about upcoming webinars, subscribe to LAF communications.

Recording from live webinar on 6/4/20

Many Ways to Practice: Landscape Architects Shaping the Future of Public Gardens

As designers versed in both environmental and cultural systems, landscape architects are particularly well-equipped to play leading roles within public gardens -- botanical gardens, arboreta, and other institutions. Through the design and management of their physical space as well as their research, conservation, and public education activities, these institutions have boundless potential to set precedents for sustainability and climate action.

As public gardens increasingly take on new roles, landscape architects are stepping up to help them address modern-day challenges relating to biodiversity, climate change, equity and access, and more. In this panel discussion, three trained landscape architects shared their experiences as leaders in shaping the futures of public gardens in Michigan, New York, and North Carolina.



Headshot of George Briggs 132sq

George Briggs
Executive Director, North Carolina Arboretum
Since 1987, George has guided development of The North Carolina Arboretum in Asheville through $35 million in capital development and oversees annual budgets exceeding $6 million, 70 employees and 600 volunteers. He has led economic development efforts in the areas of weather and climate business development, nutraceuticals and natural products, and advancement of the managed landscape industry.


Headshot of Bob Grese

Director, Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum
Professor, School for Environment and Sustainability

Bob has taught landscape architecture at the University of Michigan since 1986 and serves as Director of the University’s Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum. He is a long-time advocate of ecologically-based design and the careful stewardship of cultural and natural landscapes including the restoration and on-going management of urban wilds and the role such lands can play in re-connecting children and families with nature.


Headshot of Ursula Dean Hoskins

Ursula Dean Hoskins
Vice President for Capital Projects, New York Botanical Garden
As the first landscape architect to hold her position in the NYBG’s nearly 130-year history, Ursula oversees a staff of 7 charged with long-range planning, design, construction, historic preservation, and sustainability. She is also the liaison between her team and consultants, other NYBG staff, and city and federal agencies.


This webinar is part of a ongoing series that highlights the many ways in which landscape architects can practice and participate in fulfilling and impactful work. In addition to private practice, landscape architects frequently work for parks and gardens, non-profit and community-based organizations, landscape product suppliers, government agencies from local to federal, and more.

LAF is grateful to the many individuals and organizations that provide financial support towards fulfilling our mission to support the preservation, improvement, and enhancement of the environment.

Much of what LAF is able to accomplish would not be possible without the thought leadership and financial investment of our major supporters, including ASLA, which provides over $125,000 of in-kind support annually.