PHYLLIS ODESSEY

Seizing The Worst Part of the City: Carol Franklin

“a common field grass, is one of nature’s remarkable adaptations to stress an change. 
Wherever landscapes are disturbed, andropogon is one of the first field grasses 
to colonize the ground, providing a self-sustaining cover for the gradual return
of native forests.”
from the andropogon website.

The times they may be changin’ but for Carol Franklin the times have finally caught up with her ideas.  On October 25th at the Manhattan “satellite campus” of the New York Botanical Garden,  Franklin gave an impassioned plea for finding unused pieces of land and making them into healing ecosystems.

Rooftop gardens, rain gardens. school wetlands, bio ponds, forest restorations and green streets are the trademarks of Franklin’s firm, Andropogon.  Their projects are wide ranging. Yet, Franklin is an advocate for an inclusive landscape architecture.  “It is the fusion of all flavors that make a great stew.”

Franklin came prepared with a power point that included number of gallons of water stored, detailed percentages of soil mixtures, and figures on raw sewage filtered. And although all of this had some interest, it was not the real point.  Franklin has spent a lifetime arguing for a holistic vision of man and nature.  Her devotion to the earth hasn’t changed in the last forty years: what has changed is the technology now available to implement her ideas.

Carol Franklin keeps on truckin’ with enthusiasm. I hope I feel as passionate as she does about my profession 4 decades into it.
 ___________________________________________
Carol Franklin
Andropogon
Landscape Design Portfolio Series 2010
New York Botanical Garden

October 25

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