It's hard to believe but August 2012 marked our one year anniversary of occupancy at the New Norris House! The upcoming year of residency and evaluation has just begun, and I'm excited to serve as the 2012-2013 resident. My name is Valerie Friedmann, and I have been part of the New Norris House team since the spring of 2010. I am a graduate of the University of Tennessee Graduate Landscape Architecture Program, and I am now teaching design studio in the UTK MLA program. My role at the New Norris House has mainly been in the design and implementation of the home's landscape and integrated water harvesting/reuse systems. During the evaluation phase, my role is to oversee the monitoring and evaluation of the water systems, monitor and maintain the landscape, and of course, blog about it!
Hey, that's me collecting some water to take to the lab!
For my first post as the new resident, I wanted to write about what I'm enjoying most since moving in. To me, seeing the native grass and perennial meadow take shape over the past few weeks has been astounding. Late summer is always beautiful in East TN, as the fields and roadsides turn golden and red and purple. Our design intent at the NNH was to bring the charm of a field left to meadow into our residential landscape. Aside from beautiful early fall color and texture, our meadow provides habitat and sops up stormwater runoff.
Broomsedge and Rudbeckia blooms
The late summer texture and color of Little Bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium) complement the colors of the home
As the meadow grows, the plinth is starting to feel like an outdoor "room"
Swale in May, just after plugging with grasses...
...and after 4 months
For more info on the techniques used to establish our native grass and perennial meadow see the previous post Meadow Planting Day and landscape photos.
On September 13 we gave a presentation of our first-year's data analysis to the City of Norris Recycling Commission. Look for next week's post for details on how much energy and water we saved last year!
The New Norris House is a design/build effort from the University of Tennessee's College of Architecture and Design. Began in 2009, the home was designed and built by UT students in collaboration with Clayton Homes. The built project is now complete and the final phase of the project has begun. A team of 4 people (2 living in the home, and 2 graduate researchers) will rigorously document the experience via qualitative assessments and quantitative measurements, posting results to this blog.