March 8, 2022
Primal needs, design challenges, native plants and drone technology were just a few of the hot topics explored at the 2022 Landscape Designers Conference.

The virtual event on Jan. 25, 2022, began with the Landscape Design Sector Group AGM. Chair Haig Seferian touched on how the landscape design profession is being promoted through various events and educational programs throughout Ontario and beyond. Aina Budrevics and Steve Barnhart from the Ontario Association of Landscape Architects (OALA) also discussed their efforts to advance the Professional Practice Act.

Attendees also learned that the Landscape Ontario Awards of Excellence requirements will be adjusted over the next three years to better align with the National Awards of Landscape Excellence, so top winners can compete at that level.
Additionally, an updated Canadian Landscape Standard is now available for download as a source for best practices for landscape designers, architects, and contractors.

The conference presentations were met with high praise. Survey feedback suggested attendees found all panellists passionate, knowledgeable and engaging despite the virtual platform. Many still miss the in-person experience, but designers from other provinces appreciated the chance to connect online.

To cap the event, East African horticulturist and designer Wambui Ippolito gave a compelling keynote presentation where she encouraged all to consider how the structured — or unstructured — landscapes of their childhood influenced who they are today. Ippolito proposed the need to wander in the green, weeds and all, is a primal need that can’t be fulfilled in “policed” and perfectly trimmed landscapes and should be considered when designing future projects.

As the conference was presented with recognition of the OALA, attendees earned continuing education credits for OALA and Certified Landscape Designer (CLD) designations. A recording of the conference is available for purchase.

Landscape Ontario would like to thank presenting sponsor: in-Lite Outdoor Lighting; and supporting partners: Aquascape, NVK Nurseries, Unilock, Spring Meadow Nursery, Southbrook Accounting.