Media for Sustainability

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Sustainable Landscape Construction

“Sustainable Landscape Construction:
A Guide to Green Building Outdoors" —


By J. William Thompson and Kim Sorvig


Book Review

Five Green Globes
Our rating  




“Sustainable Landscape Construction: A Guide to Green Building Outdoors" is one of the reasons that  sustainable  practices have reached the larger landscape construction industry.  With an eye to a text for education, this book is still one of the best resources for information on just how to proceed to keep your landscape sustainable.  In a highly readable style accessible to even the layman, this second edition gives plenty of solid guidance for builders, planners, and purchasers of landscape construction.

Sustainable landscape design has come into its own.  Only a few years ago the words “sustainable design” were foreign to most of the public and many of us in the profession.  Not so today.   Going green in the landscape is becoming mainstream and not a moment too soon.    For anyone interested in maintaining the sustainable model in your landscape and garden we cannot recommend this book too highly. 

Every consumer who is planning to make changes to their landscape will want to have this valuable information at hand.  If you are contracting the work, you will want to be sure these procedures are followed to maintain the sustainable integrity of your site and project.  If you are planning to do it yourself, then this is the definitive ‘go to’ work— with step-by-step and systematic processes you can institute in both planning and execution of your work.

The authors outline ten principles for maintaining a sustainable landscape construction project.


  1. Keep healthy sites healthy
  2. Heal injured sites
  3. Favor living, flexible materials
  4. Respect the waters of life  Pave less
  5. Consider the origin of materials
  6. Know the cost of energy over time
  7. Celebrate light, defend darkness
  8. Quietly defend silence
  9. Maintain to sustain

“Sustainable Landscape Construction: A Guide to Green Building Outdoors” has 416 pages.  With case studies, many black and white photos and excellent line drawings, this book is designed to give homeowners and professionals alike a comprehensive study on sustainable practices for landscape construction. 



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