Bulking Up The Greenery

Bulking Up The Greenery

The situation: The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), www.usgbc.org, is a community of leaders working to transform the way buildings and communities are designed, built and operated. The Council’s LEED Green Building Rating System is the national benchmark for high performance green buildings. Each year, the USGBC holds the Greenbuild International Conference and Expo, where industry professionals gather to learn about the leading edge of the building and construction industry, including the latest updates and expansions of LEED. At Greenbuild 2006, USGBC representatives met with Initial Tropical Plants, www.initialplants.com, a leader in interior plantscaping for businesses, and asked the company to be a sponsor of their new Washington, D.C., headquarters. 

The Challenge

The USGBC stands for healthy, vibrant and green work environments, but its new Washington headquarters, while sleek and beautiful, did not feature any greenery. Valerie Goldbeck, branch vice president for Initial Tropical Plants in Washington, D.C., and design consultant Judy Corridon, led a team to transform the company’s offices into a lush and vibrant green workspace.

“It is very important to incorporate plantscaping into the design of green office spaces as it is essential for the overall well-being and health of employees,” says Linda Sorrento, director, Education & Research Partnerships for the USGBC and former Director of LEED for Commercial Interiors. “Employees thrive in offices which connect them to the outdoors, and bringing the outdoors inside creates a healthier and more productive atmosphere.” 

The Results

Initial Tropical Plants created a grassy and earthy design to complement the USGBC’s open floor plan and dramatic floor to ceiling windows. More than 650 plants were donated along with custom built planters. The installation was engaged the summer of 2006 with most of the design and installation completed by December 2006.

“Initial Tropical Plants discussed our design intent with us and recommended Dracaena marginata, which is a plant that thrives in a low-light level, tipped to replicate low grass and flourish indoors,” says Sorrento. “Initial Tropical Plants resourcefully provided sustainable solutions for the plants. They augmented the soil in the planters with coconut shells, rice husks and mulch from recycled content supplied by the state of Maryland.”

Visitors to the building are captivated by the lush greenery. “The plants have made a distinctive contribution to our space and visitors are always pleasantly surprised,” adds Sorrento.

“The plants are easy to maintain,” says Judy Corridon, design consultant for Initial Tropical Plants. “The plants are watered once a week which cuts down on the amount of potable water that is used for upkeep. Even with minimal water, the plants are healthy and vibrant.”

“The U.S. Green Building Council is grateful to Initial Tropical Plants for their generous donation to our new office space,” says Rick Fedrizzi, President, CEO & Founding Chair, U.S. Green Building Council. “The donated greenery brings the natural environment indoors and transforms our office space into a space that is enjoyable, attractive and engaging.” The USGBC Washington, D.C., headquarters was awarded a LEED Platinum certification honoring the innovation, design and improved indoor environmental attributes that Initial Tropical Plants’ interior landscaping brought to the facility.

Leave a Reply

More From Varieties...

August 20, 2017

Proven Winners and Kentucky Nursery and Landscape Association to Partner on Summer Outing

This year, KNLA is combining its summer outing with the Proven Winners Landscape Roadshow for an informative event that will take place on September 21.

Read More
Four Star 2018 Catalog

August 18, 2017

Four Star Greenhouses’ 2018 Catalog Includes New Varieties and Cultural Tips

The new catalog is available in both print and digital formats, and features information on new trays that allow for more plugs per square foot.

Read More
Francis Kwong, PanAmerican Seed

August 15, 2017

Ornamental Seed Scientist Francis Kwong Dies at Age 65

Kwong was most recently the Director of Seed Technology for PanAmerican Seed, and his research was instrumental in the development of calibrachoa, angelonia, and other plants.

Read More
Latest Stories

August 20, 2017

Proven Winners and Kentucky Nursery and Landscape Assoc…

This year, KNLA is combining its summer outing with the Proven Winners Landscape Roadshow for an informative event that will take place on September 21.

Read More
Four Star 2018 Catalog

August 18, 2017

Four Star Greenhouses’ 2018 Catalog Includes New Variet…

The new catalog is available in both print and digital formats, and features information on new trays that allow for more plugs per square foot.

Read More
Francis Kwong, PanAmerican Seed

August 15, 2017

Ornamental Seed Scientist Francis Kwong Dies at Age 65

Kwong was most recently the Director of Seed Technology for PanAmerican Seed, and his research was instrumental in the development of calibrachoa, angelonia, and other plants.

Read More
Candy Tops Snapdragons Series (Sakata Ornamentals)

August 3, 2017

Five Characteristics Breeders Want in Top-Performing Sp…

New spring annuals have to provide something for everyone — longevity, durability, performance, and more — if they want to meet breeders’ high standards for market-worthy plants.

Read More
Petunia 'Headliner Pink Sky" (Selecta)

August 3, 2017

Why Eccentricity is the New Black in Spring Annuals

Consumers judge plants by appearance, color impact, and ease of maintenance, which is why retailers want new spring annuals that are novel standouts.    

Read More

August 1, 2017

39 New Vegetables and Herbs for 2018

New vegetable and herb introductions for 2017 offer unique shaped fruits, distinctive foliage, intense flavors, improved disease resistance, high yields, and more. Here are 39 new vegetable and herb varieties to consider for your product mix in 2018.

Read More
2018 Griffin Catalog

July 31, 2017

Griffin Releases Print and Digital Versions of Its 2018…

The 250-page print catalog features more than 350 new varieties from leading breeders, while the enhanced digital version has extra features on crop culture, grower tools, and more.

Read More
Emerald-Coast-Growers-Guide-Feature-Image

July 27, 2017

Emerald Coast Growers Offers Updated Guide on its Newes…

This year’s guide features new varieties while maintaining Emerald Coast’s ornamental grass program and expanding its perennial plants line.

Read More
Terra Nova Shipping Box

July 20, 2017

Terra Nova Nurseries, Dümmen Orange to Partner on Unroo…

Terra Nova Nurseries has contracted with Dümmen Orange to produce unrooted cuttings (URCs) from Terra Nova private stock located at Dümmen Orange’s Central America facilities. The URCs will fulfill orders in North America and Europe.

Read More

July 20, 2017

New Perennials, Trial Gardens, and Merchandising Were H…

Darwin Perennials Day has steadily become one of the must-attend perennial events of the summer. This year, even the weather cooperated.

Read More
2018 Ball Seed Catalog

July 17, 2017

Ball Seed’s 2018 New Varieties Catalog Now Available

The expanded guide includes breakthrough breeding from Ball in annuals, perennials, vegetables, potted plants, and more.

Read More
Pleasant View Open House

July 16, 2017

Pleasant View Gardens, D.S. Cole Growers Hosting Open H…

The event gives horticulture industry professionals the chance to check out nearly 80 new introductions from Proven Winners, as well as Pleasant View’s new Savor Edibles & Fragrants line.

Read More
All American Selections

July 12, 2017

All-America Selections Celebrates Milestone Anniversary…

Coinciding with its 85th anniversary celebration, AAS is hosting an open house at its new offices, and has also released its annual report.

Read More

July 8, 2017

Plant Patent Law: Protecting the Variety Pipeline

Breeders call for better cooperation in protecting intellectual property while considering how stricter laws and expensive patents could impact the future of innovation.

Read More
Calibrachoa ‘Superbells Holy Moly!’ (Proven Winners)

July 8, 2017

Are Utility Patents Tying Up Innovation With Litigation…

The opportunities for innovation in plant breeding could be greatly advanced by creating an industry-led patent licensing platform.

Read More

July 8, 2017

Fleuroselect and CIOPORA Offer Organizational Leadershi…

Learn why breeders feel these organizations should be emulated in an industry-led initiative to protect plant breeding efforts.

Read More
Thalictrum Nimbus White (Terra Nova Nurseries)

June 30, 2017

Kelly Norris Dishes on New Plants, Going to Seed, and B…

From woody perennials to genetically modified petunias, Kelly Norris gives his take on what turned out to be a busy spring.

Read More
Jim Devereux, Green Fuse Botanicals

June 24, 2017

Green Fuse Botanicals New Vice President is Focused on …

Jim Devereux, who will oversee production, sales, and marketing for Green Fuse, says he hopes to bring genetics to the market that break from traditional production methods for finished growers.

Read More