Visit Five Great Vancouver Landscapes with Cornelia Oberlander August 22nd


On Saturday, August 22nd, Garden Dialogues ventures to Vancouver for a special full-day event hosted by the dean of Canadian landscape architects, Cornelia Hahn Oberlander, subject of a Pioneers of American Landscape Design Oral History and recipient of the American Society of Landscape Architects’ highest award, the ASLA Medal. Her influential career, which spans more than half-a-century, includes projects across the U.S. and Canada.

Monteverdi Estates
Monteverdi Estates, photo by Michael Elkan

This exclusive excursion will travel to five distinct landscape projects across the city. The morning will feature two of Oberlander’s West Vancouver projects where she will introduce an uncomplicated “plant what you see” approach, which she feels will be integral to the future of 21st-century garden-making. The first project of the day, Monteverdi Estates, is a community of twenty custom homes skillfully integrated into steep bedrock and mature forest overlooking Howe Sound. The assimilation of the built environment with the natural, forested mountain setting was the result of an in-depth collaboration between the landscape architect, architect, and engineers. Among groves of Douglas firs and Western red cedars, Oberlander has restored the landscape with lush native plants. The second project, a collaboration with Enns Gauthier Landscape Architects Inc., is a newly completed green roof at the iconic Villa Maris, a 15-story, seaside resort-style apartment building.  Built in the 1960s, it is known locally as the “Pink Palace,” a nod to the vibrant color of its exterior.  Here, undulating mounds mimic the waves of the seaside visible in the distance.

Pocket Garden
Metamorphous, photo by Tim Swanky, courtesy Paul Sangha Landscape Architecture

Attendees will begin the afternoon with a short trip to Paul Sangha Landscape Architecture’s Metamorphous, a 200-foot-long Corten steel seawall sculpture along Kitsilano’s public waterfront which provides a unique solution to erosion problems. An informal lunch will follow at Oberlander’s home studio in the University Endowment Lands where talented local chef Annabelle Choi will delight guests with her culinary artistry. The afternoon will end at a private house and intimate garden designed by a master (to be disclosed day of) where photography is not permitted, but sketching is strongly encouraged and tea and coffee will be served. 

Tickets to the event can be purchased for $125. Additional Garden Dialogues are taking place through October in Aspen and Denver, Colorado; Chicago, Illinois; and Northern California. Register now to attend this celebrated series of one-of-a-kind events.