March 5, 2013
Months of hard work by Temple University Ambler students and faculty paid off with special honors for Temple’s 2013 Philadelphia Flower Show Exhibit, “WILDE! Cultivating wonder in everyday places.”
WILDE! was awarded The Alfred M. Campbell Memorial Trophy, given to the “Educational major exhibit that demonstrates the most successful use of a variety of plants in a unique fashion;” a PHS (Pennsylvania Horticultural Society) Special Achievement Award for the “best achievement in creating a wild, natural environment;” and a PHS Gold Medal Award, “for the best use of PHS Gold Medal plants in a major exhibit.”
“With the size and complexity of this exhibit, we overcame a lot of obstacles this year. To have the work of our students, faculty, staff and alumni — without whom we wouldn’t have been able to complete our exhibit — is extraordinarily rewarding,” said Assistant Professor of Landscape Architecture Rob Kuper, who with Adjunct Assistant Professor Michael LoFurno and Horticulture Supervisor Anne Brennan, coordinated the 2013 exhibit. “I think one thing about our exhibits each year is that they are always unique — advancing ideas with different construction and plant materials. We certainly use the Flower Show theme as a basis, but we illustrate and address the theme from a different perspective.”
WILDE! seeks to “present simple, attractive and affordable ways to cultivate wildness in locations that everyone is familiar with,” said Kuper.
The exhibit takes its inspiration from a variety of English gardening concepts, from the medieval monastic and royal gardens of the Middle Ages to “wilde” gardening of the 19th Century — densely-packed, native or hardy perennials that looked natural, needed little care and welcomed wildlife, which mesh into a landscape of bogs, orchards and rock gardens — the three main gardens in Temple’s 2013 exhibit.
“The reason the Alfred Campbell Memorial Trophy is awarded — an exhibit that demonstrates the most successful use of a variety of plants in a unique fashion — really encapsulates what we try to do each year, said Kuper. “To have that intention recognized and validated in this way is really quite wonderful.”
WILDE! also takes inspiration from Temple University founder Russell Conwell’s “Acres of Diamonds,” finding “brilliance” in your own backyard or neighborhood. The exhibit recycles numerous found objects, such as broken glass bottles, concrete, lumber, fencing and corrugated metal and repurposes them “in a more artful way, turning it into something beautiful,” said LoFurno.
Creating the exhibit this year was a true collaboration between faculty, staff and students from the current junior class working closely with dedicated alumni, who, according to Kuper, “shared their expertise and knowledge to guide and mentor our students.”
“Their previous experience and tips they had for us were priceless and we can’t thank our alumni enough. This is an experience that you wouldn’t get at most colleges and universities don't get — it’s so rewarding to see how our drawings and what we had in our minds for the past four months has come to life,” said Landscape Architecture Junior Allison Hanna. “As landscape architecture students, we now understand the process from design to build, the process of creating construction documents. It’s truly invaluable and an experience that I will never forget.”
Kuper said a design-build project of this type leads to “an advancement in thinking” for students when they approach projects in the future.
“They are realizing ideas — taking something in their head, putting it on paper, and then actually building it,” he said. “They are resolving problems that crop up and finding solutions that are functional and structurally sound. Participating in this project, I think, certainly bolsters their confidence in their own abilities. You can see the pride on their faces — even after their part of the exhibit was completed, students stayed around to see it complete and whole, to see what they had created.”
For more information about “WILDE! Cultivating wonder in everyday places,” contact 267-468-8108 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
WILDE! continues a long tradition in the Department of Landscape Architecture and Horticulture of interdisciplinary and hands-on learning experiences that promote a sustainable design approach. It also continues the Department’s decades-long association with the Philadelphia International Flower Show, taking home “Best in Show” awards in 1987, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1993, 1997, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2007, 2010, and 2012 and prestigious honors from the Garden Club Federation of Pennsylvania in 2004 and the Horticultural Society in 2006. In 2003, 2010 and 2011, Temple University Ambler was also awarded the prestigious Bulkley Medal of the Garden Club of America.
Building upon a rich history of environmental teaching that dates back more than a century, Temple University Ambler is home to the Department of Landscape Architecture and Horticulture. The degree programs are a unique blend of disciplines, providing students with the design and plant background necessary to succeed in any aspect of the Green Industry.
The Department of Landscape Architecture and Horticulture at Temple University Ambler, part of the School of Environmental Design in Temple’s College of Liberal Arts, is committed to excellence in ecologically based education. The department’s goal is to train leaders in the art and science of horticulture (A.S., B.S., and certificate programs) and landscape architecture (MLArch and B.S. programs). The programs provide students with knowledge and understanding of the environment so that they can improve the quality of our urban, suburban, and rural communities.
For more information on the Horticulture and Landscape Architecture programs at Temple University Ambler, visit www.ambler.temple.edu/la-hort. For more information on the 2013 Philadelphia International Flower Show, visit www.theflowershow.com.
CONTACT: James Duffy, 267-468-8108, email@example.com, release available by e-mail