DALLAS – Lambert Landscape Company won one of only three “Decade Awards” given at the national 40th Annual Environmental Improvement Awards Program sponsored by the Professional Landcare Network (PLANET). The firm was also one of only six companies honored with an inaugural Sustainable Company Award.
The Decade Award is given to a Professional Land Care Association of America (one of the forerunners to PLANET) legacy member that has managed a garden continuously for 10 or more years and that garden previously has won a Grand Award. The firm was honored with the Decade Award for 2009 for its submission of a Mediterranean Garden, which was designed, installed and subsequently has been managed by Lambert’s since the early '90s. This award-winning garden received a Grand Award in 2000 for Exterior Residential Design/Build and in 2002 a Grand Award for Exterior Residential Landscape Maintenance.
Embracing a series of outdoor rooms relating to the home’s Old World architectural style, the one-acre estate aesthetically blends a complex assortment of plants ranging from warm and cool season turfs, extensive mixed vines and ground-covers, carefully selected color, formally maintained shrubs, specimen plantings and established trees that require horticultural expertise and sensitivity. According to Paul Fields, president and director of design for Lambert’s, “The design intent of an aged European estate has been maintained through consistent and appropriate horticultural management, including periodic garden revisions provided as part of Lambert’s comprehensive garden management services.”
Mr. Fields noted that the award-winning garden, both in design and maintenance, of this 1920s residence is the reflection of a client whose personal interests include fine antiques and gardening. “The style requires the detailing of a formal design in some areas while leaving other features natural and loose. Ivy is often allowed to creep unrestricted in select spots and oxalis and dichondra permitted to grow in the numerous cobblestone paths’ crevices,” he said. The client’s collection of antique containers, seasonally planted with textural plantings and strategic pops of monochromatic bursts, punctuate the axial stone walks which link the various garden rooms.
Lambert credits one of the successes of the Mediterranean Garden with its commitment to the environment as an all-organic company, therefore insect and disease control as well as fertilization is managed with organic products and through proper horticultural practices. The foundation of the Lambert’s program is a proprietary compost tea that is specially blended using a high-quality, microbial rich compost along with liquid molasses and fish hydrolysis. When balanced with appropriate irrigation management, this approach allows the firm to maintain this beautiful garden in partnership with nature’s resources.
PLANET created the Sustainable Company Award to recognize and herald those businesses that strive to protect and conserve resources, reduce waste, and prevent pollution, while promoting an ethic of environmental sustainability and improvement within the workplace.
As a company that is celebrating its 90th anniversary, Lambert’s has always been at the forefront of reuse and recycle. An early example is the use and recycling of plastic pots and wooden pallets, though the firm has incorporated more than 40 recognizable ways for their clients and themselves to protect and conserve resources - making sure that everything compostable or reusable is recycled. Utilizing “Water Smart” irrigation systems, composting and reuse of green waste (leaves, lawn clippings, brush), and designing with a commitment to the environment as an all-organic company have been a standard for Lambert.
The internal policies include the use of recycled paper, the “think before you print” message on outgoing emails, and use of energy-efficient compact fluorescent lamps (CFL) when possible. Lambert’s has also worked with its property-owner to get the most out of their building, including programmable thermostats to zoned spaces to
shutting down non-essential equipment in the evening. Perhaps the most noticeable addition to their location this year is a 38,000 gallon rainwater harvesting tank which collects their building water runoff for use in their proprietary compost tea brewed daily.