Throughout the cold months of the year, when most of us are dreaming about our gardens, plant breeders are already hard at work selecting new varieties. It’s a multi-step process involving rigorous field trials at public gardens, universities, nurseries and by individual growers, seed producers and industry representatives.
This suave and contemporary backyard was a mundane patch of grass and concrete just one summer ago. “It was really a mess,” says Vic Bertrand bluntly. Bertrand, the president of full-service landscaping company Northstone, describes the area’s 2,000 square feet as an unappealing concrete patio and “just grass, weeds, shrubs.”
Brutal. It’s not a word one often associates with a backyard, but landscape architect Myke Hodgins had hit upon the mot juste in this case. At the rear of a neo-Georgian house in Montreal’s Golden Square Mile, the yard is in a little urban canyon, surrounded on three sides by multi-storey apartment buildings.
Creative thinkers are regularly devising new and innovative ways to solve humanity’s problems.
Swiss designer/entrepreneur Yves Behar, for instance, recently created a smart, solar-powered garden system that monitors soil and water levels. The first female architect in Pakistan, Yasmeen Lari, has built 36,000 safe homes in a flood and earthquake region since 2010, becoming a world leader in providing disaster-relief shelters.