Outdoor Environment

Dirt’s Tale (06-29-17)

Bogard carefully details, in The Ground Beneath Us, how the dirt under our feet affects our lives.  He reports on the biological implications of paving over it, for example, and generally makes the point that the ground is a valuable resource that we should use wisely.  Dirt is much more than simply the outer skin of our planet and pavement may not really be our friend.  The text of The Ground Beneath Us makes it clear that dirt is closely tied to both our history and future as a species.

Nature and Disorder (06-01-17)

Kotabe, Kardan, and Berman studied how the appeal of viewed nature is influenced by the disorder present in it.  They share that “Natural environments have powerful aesthetic appeal linked to their capacity for psychological restoration. In contrast, disorderly environments are aesthetically aversive, and have various detrimental psychological effects.

Designing the Sensation of Nature (04-03-17)

Ebbensgaard reports on landscape design that engineers sensory experiences.  He states that “Post-industrial wastelands have been given increased attention by landscape architects since the late 1990s. Through their redesign, landscape architects argue that the sensory qualities of wild nature benefit people’s health and well-being and improve the urban ecosystem. . . . such landscape designs mark a shift from designing nature as such to designing the sensation of nature. . . .


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