Bob Reeves, a journeyman in the garden centre and landscape trades, has spent the last decade unraveling the mystery of how plants in undisturbed natural settings perform so much better than the same plants in an urban landscape. Why are plants in undisturbed ecosystems more drought tolerant? Why do they live longer? Why are they less likely to suffer from disease or insect attack? And where and how are they obtaining water and nutrients when the same plants in suburban landscape need our constant care?
In this session, Bob will demonstrate why even non-scientists must care about current findings in soil science. We will undertake a journey into a hidden world – an exploration of the dynamic communities of beneficial soil microbes that support the landscapes we all rely on. Bob will provide a practical guide to understanding the dynamics and importance of plant/microbe interactions that anyone who makes their livelihood in the landscape trades cannot afford to ignore.
The session will conclude with a detailed look at how landscape professionals can implement a more holistic approach to growing, installing, and caring for landscape plants. Plant failures are a major profit killer – no one wins when a plant dies on a landscape site. Ever the practical guy, Bob will approach this issue from a dollars and cents point of view. The audience will be asked consider where we are now – and how to move toward sustainable landscapes - and a sustainable business model for the future.