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Is Horticulture Too Ornamental?

Articles: Is Horticulture Too Ornamental?

Fantasy, eclecticism and a wish for decorative embellishment are the bases of widespread and dominant horticultural attitudes now due for serious revision.
We are in an age of reevaluation. We have been forced to reevaluate our lifestyles to meet the limits of this planet in the 21st century. This generation of young people is probably the first who will be taught to make do with less. Frivolous and wasteful lifestyles fostered in the “growth is progress” era are being checked with admonitions that “small is beautiful.”

Horticulture* and its related professions are not exempt from this period of introspection. In the West the drought has precipitated a reassessment of how and why we plant the landscape. The need for reassessment is not limited to this region; horticulture, in all its many facets and in every part of the world, needs self-examination.

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*Horticulture is used to include the culture, care and use of plants in the landscape by the many related professionals (horticulturists, landscape architects, arborists, etc.) as well as the amateur gardener.

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Perhaps the term “ornamental horticulture” is the place to start. It is a term which needs...

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