At the site of an ongoing project we wrote about last year in our post “Strawberry Staircases and Small City Permaculture,” we’ve been hard at work replacing an old stone retaining wall and replacing it with local bluestone.Read More
The newly completed woodland trail and fishing access point are the latest installation in a five year project at Mianus River Park, CT. Following recommendations from the Mianus River Park Ecological Master Plan which we developed in 2013, our team set out to design a better entrance to the park that would enhance the user experience while protecting the local environment. In the past, high visitation rates and excessive foot traffic have caused ongoing shoreline erosion, sedimentation of the riverbanks, and loss of understory vegetation.Read More
In Stamford, Connecticut, community members and local environmental stakeholders expressed concerns over the degradation and pollution of Cummings Pond, which has been altered over recent decades by urban development and sediment deposition. In response, our team has provided research-driven consultation and ecologically-principled recommendations that take into account the larger context of the pond.Read More
Green Street Park is a well loved community park, just over a mile from our studio in Beacon. In response to requests from community members and the City, we partnered with Hudson Land Design Engineering to work alongside Beacon Park and Recreation in designing several new features for the park. These new features are tailored to community input and will provide an improved experience for parkgoers of all ages.Read More
In Fall 2018, we conducted a non-native invasive species inventory on a 7.7 acre lakeside property in Putnam Valley. We surveyed the following habitat: upland forest, riparian forest stream corridor, forest edge, and disturbed habitat along the roads and construction zone areas. Overall, we found that Berberis thunbergii (Japanese Barberry) shrubs and Celastrus orbiculatus (Oriental Bittersweet) woody vine pose the biggest threat to plant diversity because these species are the most abundant non-native invasive species on the property.Read More
New York City spends billions of dollars to protect its drinking water system, arguably the City's largest capital asset. Since 2016, One Nature has propagated plants for riparian stream corridor restoration project in the New York City's West-of-Hudson Reservoir system. These plants, grown with no chemical herbicides or pesticides, are critical to ensuring that the forests around the reservoirs are healthy enough to filter pollutants from the drinking water. Seeds are collected from the Catskill Mountains, started by our partners at the NYC Greenbelt Center in Staten Island, and grown-to-size in our plant nursery. At least 5,000 trees are delivered each fall to partner Soil and Water Conservation districts for installation.Read More
At a small residential property in Beacon, we extensively regraded a backyard slope to protect the home from stormwater, then transformed the yard into a stormwater stream and a low-maintenance, native-planted hillside.Read More
At a hillside property in Cold Spring, NY, we’ve begun work implimenting a comprehensive landscaping plan which includes establishment of hardscaping around the home, construction of a bluestone slab patio and walkway, a mulched perennial garden area, and a native wildflower and grass meadow. Our work is in the process of enmeshing the property with the surrounding forests and wetlands, creating a smooth gradient between the two. The forest transitions to the native trees which dot the perennial hillside garden, and then to the native shrubs surrounding the residence in a planted bed.
Originally the property was a new home surrounded by fill, which aside from being aesthetically and ecologically barren, is highly vulnerable to establishment of weedy and invasive species. Working from this blank slate, the homeowners were looking to create a new landscape, one that would provide habitat for birds and other wildlife, while showcasing their new home. The initial designs were drafted in 2017, and by the spring of 2018 we had hit the ground running.
In the planned perennial garden area we spread 6 to 10” of woodchips over the fill to act as a mulch layer that over time will becoming rich soil ready for native trees and shrubs. Downhill of the home we began the process of creating a native wildflower meadow by removing invasive species and spreading a mix of seeds over the area and covering it with straw for the fall and winter seasons. Come spring, the hillside will be a vibrant native meadow instead of erosion-prone fill. Lastly, the bluestone patio, which was set by our crew after careful regrading, rests below a forested rocky bluff, alongside a ravine filled with native wildflowers.
In 2014, One Nature was commissioned to rethink a private residence in Beacon, NY. The new landscape features a tiny low-mow lawn, wild harvested trees, shribs, and herbaceous material, three stormwater gardens, a privacy fence, and a reclaimed bluestone entryway.
Now in 2018 the transformation is striking. One of the main goals of any ecological restoration project is to create a self-sustaining habitat. This rewilding project included plantings of sandbar willows, yellow coneflowers, and native grasses that have not only survived, but thrived without the need for frequent maintenance. The willows and wildflowers are not only beautiful, but provide privacy for the homeowners. The rain gardens filled with native grasses and other wildflowers collect and redirect stormwater away from the home. The beautiful dogwood planted interior to the wildflowers provides shade and a space for kids to play under. Additionally, maintenance needs were reduced when we created a mulched area with woodchips and recycled paper underneath to prevent weedy growth. The self-sustaining plantings have given way to a diverse set of native plant species, creating an aesthetic sense that is wild without being unruly.
In 2014, One Nature partnered with Green Teen volunteers and Hudson Todd to transform a vacant lot in Beacon, NY into a temporary pop-up park. All across the world, real estate speculation causes land in dense urban areas to lay vacant, sometimes for decades. This project creates a temporary landscape so that the land can be ecologically and socially productive until such time that development occurs.Read More
The project includes raised agricultural beds surrounded by a meadow cattle fence that protects the plants while integrating the entire area into the landscape. We’ve also added fruit trees and shrubs in an arbor that includes native peaches, apples, blackberries, and raspberries. In the front of the property we installed an evergreen hedge composed of Northern White Cedars and Tamaracks. Lastly, we created a streetside planting strip containing witchhazels, bayberries, chokeberries, and an assortment of herbaceous wildflower species.Read More
With temperatures plummeting and the year near its conclusion, there is still plenty for the team at One Nature to be excited about, particularly the recent completion of a staircase and accompanying grove of trees at a residence here in our...Read More
When planning began last winter for the design and build of the Wee Woods, a woodland playground at the Wee Play facility at Beacon’s Memorial Park, the project’s overseers set out with a clear vision of the kind of park they wanted to build, and a guiding philosophy that emphasized the importance of naturalized play in the development and cultivation of young minds...Read More
Vassar research intern Elise Chessman wrote this brief summary of her work mapping ecological function at Safe Harbors Green in Newburgh, NY. One Nature designed and built the park in 2016 and now, one year later, we went back to evaluate how successful (or not!) our work was at regenerating local ecosystem functions.Read More
Our team provided an analysis of the impact of new shadow created by a proposed development in Westport, CT. The proposed project site is on the western side of the Saugatuck River. The site is covered primarily by deciduous trees which lose their leaves during the cold season, allowing sunlight to penetrate to the forest floor until Spring leaf-out. There is also a large intertidal wetland at the toe of the sloped site.
Our team used a georeferenced 3D computer modelling software to establish an existing conditions model of the site. After we modeled the existing shade conditions, we added the “proposed” and “alternative” building scenarios to the model. We used architectural plans submitted to us by a third-party to model the dimensions of the proposed and alternative buildings. We specifically modeled conditions at noon, 2 pm, and 4 pm on the Spring Equinox and the Summer Solstice.
Our modeling efforts suggested that the most severe shadow impacts to existing wetland will occur during springtime late afternoons. Fall equinox shadow patterns cast by the new structure would mirror those as during spring equinox conditions. However, Spring impacts would outweigh the Fall because leaves have not yet come out on surrounding deciduous trees and therefore the building creates much more new shadow.
"Green design" is touted on almost every new large landscape construction project, but how often is that actually true? And how is it "measured"? In this 45 minute talk, join Bryan, Anna and Elise as they present their joint assessment of the environmental and community impacts created by Safe Harbors Green, a half-acre publicly accessible park in the heart of downtown Newburgh.Read More
Read about our Vassar research intern Anna Beeman's work to evaluate the macro impacts of Safe Harbors Green, a park One Nature Design/Built in Newburgh, NY. Over the course of several months, Anna performed extensive research and outreach that quantified the environmental social, and ecumenic impact of the park... so far.Read More
Thanks to a grant from the DEC, we are working with the Environmental Cooperative at Vassar Barns, Susan Blickstein AICP/PP, PhD, and the LRC Group to develop a campus-wide green infrastructure strategy.Read More
Camp Rockaway Opens Pilot Project
We started working with Camp Rockaway several years ago to develop a landscape vision for a private ecotopic campground within the City of New York. Just last week they opened up their first beach tents at Fort Tilden!Read More
"Quinn is the principal and founder of One Nature, an environmental design firm whose main office is down an alley off the west end of Main Street in Beacon. Its native-plant nursery is down another alley nearby. No matter which alley you go down, the mission is the same: Creating spaces in which nature and culture can interact in a way that benefits both."Read More