Landscaping and planting work was the last element to finishing this pool project. A mature maple tree was transplanted from on site to create the feeling of the woodland forest coming up to the edge of the mountain pond. Extensive drainage was required on the site. A bio swale with plants and native rock carries the runoff down to a rain garden. A rain garden is a shallow depression in the landscape with well draining soils and vegetation to catch water and filter it back down to the ground water. Lastly, summer flowering plants create a softer edge the large quantities of stone on the project.
The Department of Landscape Architecture at the University of Illinois offers undergraduate and master’s level programs, as well as a PhD program in landscape architecture, one of the few in the nation. The bachelor’s degree in landscape architecture (BLA) is a four-year program consisting of 124 semester hours. Of those, 65 hours are required to be landscape architecture courses, consisting of design studio, construction, plant materials and design, history, design communication, and a professional internship. Since the program is a part of the College of Fine and Applied Arts, there is a foreign language requirement, as well as an art and rhetoric requirement. The master’s in landscape architecture is structured as either a two-year or three-year program, depending on whether or not a student chooses to study design as well. Studies will consist of a combination of studios, coursework, and thesis research/development depending on approval. Students also have the option of pursuing joint MLA/master of urban planning or MLA/MBA programs. All students are required to complete a professional summer internship, and design students will spend their final fall semester at the Chicago Studio to further study urban landscapes.