Posts Tagged ‘Maryland’

James Burnett Sunnylands Annenberg

James Burnett leading the tour of the Sunnylands Annenberg Center

On October 28th and 29th, OvS Principal Eric D. Groft attended The Cultural Landscape Foundation (TCLF) Board Meeting in Palm Springs, California. The meeting was held at the new Sunnylands Annenberg Center. Sunnylands is the 200-acre estate that was the West Coast home of Ambassador and Mrs. Walter H. Annenberg. Prior to her death in 2009, Mrs. Annenberg identified 15 additional acres adjacent to Sunnylands on which to construct a center and gardens for public programs. She commissioned Frederick Fisher and Partners to design the center and the Office of James Burnett to design the gardens. The nine-acre gardens now feature more than 50,000 low-water-use plants and include walking paths, a labyrinth, green lawn, and a natural wildflower area. Sunnylands Center and Gardens and the renovated historic estate are scheduled to open in early 2012, but the TCLF Board got a sneak peak during a walking tour led by landscape architect James Burnett.

The events of the weekend began on Friday evening, when Eric attended a book signing for Charlotte Freize’s new book Private Paradise: Contemporary American Gardens. Amongst the gardens featured in the book is Casa Luna, a garden designed by OvS on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. Cocktails and the book signing were held at the home of Marc Ware, a Palm Springs resident featured in the book, followed by dinner at Johannes.

Saturday started off early with a tour of the Kaufmann Desert House designed by Richard Neutra in 1946. The home was later restored by Marmol and Radziner, with material input and consulting by Albert Frey. The home’s original gardens were designed by Patricia and Chester “Cactus Slim” Moorten around 1949-1950 and have been updated a number of times over the years.

Elrod House

Elrod House

Later that day, the group enjoyed a tour of Elrod House, a John Lautner-designed five bedroom, five and a half bathroom residence commissioned by designer Arthur Elrod in 1968 and featured in the classic James Bond movie, “Diamonds Are Forever”, in 1971. The home’s 60 foot-wide circular living is surmounted by a conical dome that fans out in nine petals between nine clerestories angled up to bring in light. Retractable curved glass curtain walls open the entire living room and pool terrace to panoramic views of Mount San Jacinto, Mount San Gorgonio and the full sweep of the valley below and mountain ranges beyond. The very rock of the ridge is incorporated into the design throughout the home.

Saturday evening, Eric drove to San Diego for the ASLA Annual Meeting and Expo with Mario Nievera, Keith Leblanc and Dennis McGlade. The drive over the mountains at sunset was an inspiration! And as anyone could imagine, so was the company and conversation!

Sunnylands Annenberg

Fountain/reflecting pool at the Sunnylands Annenberg Center


Detail of Fountain

Detail of Fountain


A pomegranite tree grown by Jack Benny's mother!


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OvS paid a visit to the United Therapeutics Headquarters in Silver Spring, Maryland on May 25th to complete a Final Plant Warranty Inspection for the site. The purpose of the visit was to inspect all plant material and determine if any replacements were required. We completed a walkthrough of the site and were pleasantly surprised to find that there were very few replacements required. We were also shocked at just how much the plants had grown in a two-year period.

The roof terraces in particular were fantastic. The Achillea tomentosa was a full bloom bright yellow, the Salvia ‘Tesquicola’ was just starting to pop blue and the multiple different colored Sedums had spread as intended. Stainless steel planters, the 6th floor arbor, and beautiful site furnishings, together with the plantings, have created pleasant outdoor rooms to be enjoyed by the employees of United Therapeutics.

United Therapeutics Green Roof

United Therapeutics Green Roof

Rooftop Detail


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Guests from the Hillwood Estate, Museum and Gardens visited gardens designed and installed by Oehme, van Sweden & Associates on the eastern shore of Maryland on Monday May 9th. OvS Principal Eric Groft led two garden tours on the bay at Ferry Cove in Sherwood, MD including OvS Founder James van Sweden’s home and garden and the garden of next door neighbor, architect Suman Sorg, who designed the houses on each of the properties.

Eric Groft address the hillwood museum group in the formal garden on Marengo Creek

Hillwood Estate Executive Director Kate Markert and Program Director Joan Wetmore were in attendance along with 40 other friends and sponsors. Following the tours, Eric Groft signed the new OvS book The Artful Garden: Creative Inspiration for Landscape Design.

Eric Groft signing the Artful Garden in the garden at Ferry Cove

It was a spectacular spring day of Euphorbia palustris, Tradescantia, and Baptismia all at peak bloom. Lunch was served at the home of Jan Kirsch in Bozman, MD. The day finished with a tour of a historic house and garden that Eric Groft had worked on 15 years ago, located on Marengo Creek. Iris Caesars Brother and Paeonia lactiflora ‘White Wings’ provided a show in the formal garden.

Eric explains the philosophy of the garden to the group on the bayside of the SorgHouse

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Oehme, van Sweden is proud to announce that the National Capital Region Chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council has selected Schick Goldstein Architect’s United Therapeutics project in Silver Spring, Maryland as the recipient of its 2010 Award of Excellence for new Building Design and Construction. Oehme, van Sweden was part of the Schick Goldstein team for this project to design an international headquarters for the biotechnology company United Therapeutics. The project, awarded LEED Gold status in April 2010, features extensive green roof terraces accessible from many of the offices, workstations and conference rooms.

Announcement of the award was made at the NCR Chapter’s “A Midsummer Night’s Green” event on July 28, 2010 at the National Museum of Women in the Arts. The USGBC NCR chapter developed the Awards program in order to recognize outstanding accomplishments in sustainable design and construction, to honor USGBC member firms that have adopted “green” practices into their mission, and to celebrate individuals who have advanced sustainability in the chapter’s region. The award recipients were selected by a distinguished panel of leaders from the national capital region in various fields in the sustainable design community and development industry.

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