Canada West Landscape Architecture


“Canada West Landscape Architecture” is an examination of how settlers undertook to re-create and develop English garden ideas in two very different physical and climatic regions of North America: a) the Southwestern coastal areas of British Columbia and b) the grasslands of the Canadian Prairies. It details how English gardens were remembered and how this affected the ways in which settlers created gardens in their new environments. Using selected examples, the book compares and contrasts some recreated ornamental gardens of memory over ten decades of parallel development. The settlers in both areas shared a common European (largely English) cultural, visual and literary heritage. From this standpoint the narrative includes much details of the ideas and concepts found in the various styles and forms of the English Garden over the period from the mid-eighteenth to the first decade of the twentieth century and shows how these manifested themselves in the garden development of the two western Canadian regions.

In the context of this study the garden is defined as a collection or arrangement of living plants, ornamental trees, shurbs, herbaceous and bulbous plants that when arranged and displayed singly or in groups about the grassed grounds of a home permanantly enhance and beautify it. While the choice of plants was almost unlimited of Southwestern British Columbia, for the Prairies suitable ornamental gardens trees, shrubs and flowers had to be ‘invented’, that is found and developed, in order to produce a permanant garden landscape. This book documents many of the dedicated and defiant amateurs and mainly European trained, horticulturalists, who hybridized and selected suitable hardy ornamentals for the prairie garden. Especially emphasized (though not exclusively) are the contributions of the Prairie Dominion Experimental Farms and the garden ornamentals created by Isabella Preston at the Ottawa farm. Detailed are the creations by Les Kerr at Sutherland, W. R. Leslie, John Walker and Henry Marshall at Morden, and Frank Skinner at Dropmore, Manitoba.

Lastly, this narrative includes the story of the writer’s grandparents and great grandparents and some others who emigrated and lived in both these western Canadian environments, and is presented through the medium of the gardens they built between 1888 and 1999.

You can purchase Canada West Landscape Architecture here:

CDs are available for $26 incl. S&H. Good for gifts.
Ebooks are also available for the same price. This is the greener
option. Please email us @ bcbigleafmaplebooks at gmail dot ca

Canada West Landscape Architecture book by Clive Lionel Justice is now available in digital format.

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