Huffington Post/Charles Birnbaum article

There is a great post by Charles Birnbaum on the Huffington Post on the lack of coverage and critical review of landscape architecture in the main stream media (gosh, I hate that term).

"Currently, architecture criticism can secure precious real estate on the Times' front page, while landscape architecture is frequently shunted to the Times Home section. A decade or so ago, that wasn't so bad, but their editorial priorities have changed. Now landscape architecture is being crowded out by articles about reorganizing closets, new mops, heirloom gourds, the cult of garlic cloves, when to prune shrubs, or growing mushrooms at home (for the record, I have nothing against garlic, mushrooms or the pruning of shrubs)." 

See the whole article here

Historically, there has been a lack of coverage simply because of a lack of understanding of our little profession, but I think that as we go forward the challenge is going to be even greater.  The lack of funds for designing and building quality public spaces will be increasingly acute in the coming years, and won't improve until all levels of government are able to recover from their respective budget crises.  We will rely more on private sources of money or public/private partnerships for improvements to the land.  The lack of funding for basic maintenance has already started to show, resulting in shabby parks, even those recently constructed.

A crusade for more mainstream coverage of designed landscapes (preferably designed by L.A.'s) will help focus attention on neglected and money-starved parks and public open spaces, which I consider crucial infrastructure equivalent to roads and sewers.  The good news for L.A.'s is that increased public acceptance of environmental issues and sustainable design principals will continue to drive the profession forward from a moral, ethical and cost driven standpoint. Think green!