The Gardens of Naugatuck Valley Community College

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The Gardens of Naugatuck Valley Community College

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Tamarack Arboretum Teaching Garden Alan J. Zinser Memorial Rose Garden Shakespeare Garden Poets’ Circle Horticulture Greenhouse Glacier Ridge Trail Wisniewski Japanese Memorial Garden Wisniewski Japanese Healing Garden Sustainable Garden Biblical Garden Medicinal Garden Alcove Planting Earth-Kind Rose Testing Site American Rose Trials for Sustainability (A.R.T.S.) Garden Map


The word had begun to get out, close and far and wide: Up that hill there is knowledge and beauty and kindness; a garden inviting us all to partake; a joyous garden, a giving garden, cultivated by caring believers in the value of the human race. Excerpted from “The Giving Garden” by Dr. Daisy Cocco De Filippis

“There is something about a garden” many a phrase would begin, and so there is. The Gardens of Naugatuck Valley Community College are, above all, microcosms of the values we hold dear as an institution. Cultivated through many hours of hard work and labor, the Gardens are a product of intense study, understanding and application of theories learned. They are teaching laboratories that are open, transparent and beautiful and contribute much to make our College a humane and learned institution. Some have been built to support a particular horticultural concept, others to more closely examine plant species and three have been created in loving memory of colleagues past. I take great pride in writing these brief words of introduction to what is joyous, caring and giving work. Professors, staff and students, as part of their course work but also on their own time, have come together to draft, imagine and create something that, quite often, cuts across the disciplines, inviting in the sciences, math, business, and yes, also the humanities. Horticulture has to be one of the most beautiful workforce initiatives, a beautiful path to a life-long career. It is a joy to welcome you to a pictorial sample of the happiness, knowledge and beauty to be experienced by all who come through our doors. Thank you for joining our journey and enjoy your stay!

Daisy Cocco De Filippis, Ph.D. President

TAMARACK ARBORETUM For hundreds of years, Europeans have planted trees to commemorate births, marriages, ascensions to thrones, military victories and deaths. A scholar tree is planted in China for the passing of a teacher or a low government official, a golden rain tree is planted for a high government official and a willow is planted for peasants. At the Tamarack Arboretum, there are many commemorative trees donated by friends and family to mark the milestones of campus life. The Tamarack Arboretum began with two professors and their students planting commemorative trees as an effort to re-leaf the campus after construction left the land barren and encroached. In 1990, Debra Farrick, a landscape architecture graduate student at the University of Massachusetts, established the design for the grounds. Today, the Tamarack Arboretum comprises 285 different tree and shrub species and 12 horticultural laboratories that support courses and serve as an educational resource for the public. The trees planted were recommended by the Cornell University Urban Tree Institute and the Cooperative Extension Services at UMASS and URI.


Established: 1986 Founded by: Professor Joseph Faryniarz with the support of Professor Anthony Bleach Pedagogical role: The Arboretum is a living laboratory for students in the botany, horticulture, field biology and environmental science. It also provides our citizens with a public collection of lesser known trees to examine and consider using on their own property.

Tamarack Arboretum | 3


Tamarack Arboretum | 5

TEACHING GARDEN In 2006, the Connecticut Nursery and Landscapers Association (CNLA) elected to make the grounds of NVCC the Plant Connecticut annual project. CNLA members donated perennial plants and students and faculty arranged them into an attractive and successful planting design - all in one day - to establish the southern section of the garden. The following year, the northern section of the garden was designed and installed by students thanks to funding from a Perkins Grant. That same grant provided additional funding to enable students in the Landscape Mechanics course to create the walkways and wooden arbor. The ‘Little King’ river birch, planted in memory of former student Timothy Dioses dominates, but the tremendously diverse plant selection includes Shasta daisies, hardy geraniums and Japanese anemones in large numbers. Ornamental grasses such as big blue stem, feather reed grass and Japanese silver grass provide structural elements and asters and Helen’s flowers add fall color. A solar-powered fountain was donated in 2010 by Dr. Bonnie Simon, professor emeritus.


Established: 2006 Founded by: Professor Robert Herman and NVCC horticulture students Pedagogical role: The Teaching Garden is utilized by horticulture faculty and students to identify plants, realize their cultural and maintenance requirements and understand how they may be used in garden design inWoody Plants, Herbaceous Plants, Landscape Construction and Landscape Maintenance courses.

Teaching Garden | 7


Teaching Garden | 9

ALAN J. ZINSER MEMORIAL ROSE GARDEN Roses have long been regarded as the “queen of flowering plants,” so it is with great pride that NVCC planted its first rose garden in 2009 thanks to a generous memorial gift by the family of the late Alan J. Zinser, who taught in the College’s Business Department. The garden provides a living laboratory experience for students and visitors to learn, observe, enjoy and rest inside a gated oasis within our urban community college campus. The open design also provides an intimate space for small gatherings, such as poetry/ literature readings, art classes, horticultural landscape construction classes and honors receptions. The Rose Garden is a living showcase of less-common, lower-maintenance horticultural materials that offer possibilities for the urban/suburban environment and encourage greater and healthier botanical diversity. National Merit Award roses, including the lower-maintenance knock out series, are featured to promote cultivars that require far less pesticide intervention. A climbing rose arbor entrance and other hybrid roses encourage further study in landscape projects. The garden is surrounded by less commonly found trees such as Persian parrotia, hackberry, hedge maple, Cornelian cherry and Rutgers’ hybrid Korean dogwoods and a variety of flowering Viburnum that are recommended for greater landscape use by the Cornell University Urban Tree Institute and the Cooperative Extension Services at UMASS and URI. The Agro-Bio Club, Student Government Association, private donors and the nurseries involved with the CNLA Plant Connecticut 2006 project donated trees, shrubs, benches, tables and the garden’s central fountain.


Established: 2009 Founded by: Professor Joseph Faryniarz Pedagogical role: The Rose Garden is a laboratory of sustainable roses, perennials and trees., providing horticulture students with first-hand experience in the care of roses. The space is a peaceful respite for the college community and visitors from urban campus life.

Alan J. Zinser Rose Garden | 11


Alan J. Zinser Rose Garden | 13

SHAKESPEARE GARDEN The Shakespeare Garden was dedicated in 2009 and utilizes various species of plants that are found within the literature of William Shakespeare (1564-1616). It serves as a space for student leisure, creativity and relaxation. Located in front of the NVCC Fine Arts Center, the garden is cared for by horticulture students throughout the semester. “William Shakespeare, the most famous bard in the history of the English language, left us a legacy of beauty and love. Our garden represents a celebration of his love for nature and of people; a space to celebrate our own humanity in harmony with nature.” - NVCC President Daisy Cocco De Filippis, Ph.D. “The Life According to Nature” Under the greenwood tree Who loves to lie with me, And turn his merry note Unto the sweet bird’s throat, Come hither, come hither, come hither! Here shall he see No enemy But winter and rough weather. 14

Established: 2009 Founded by: David L. Freedman, Class of 2011 Pedagogical role: This garden provides horticulture students a diverse laboratory of shrubs and perennials to study. It encourages literature students to examine more closely the connection between Shakespeare and his metaphors based on plants. It serves as a public resource to promote greater interest in the works of Shakespeare.

Shakespeare Garden | 15


Shakespeare Garden | 17

POETS’ CIRCLE “So often in life, a poem has the power to express human thought, emotions and creativity in an exceptional way. This garden inspires visitors with the works of famous international poets, yet the goal is much deeper. This space has been created to invite reflection and communion. Let us embrace the moment and this opportunity to explore the poet within each one of us.” — NVCC President Daisy Cocco De Filippis, Ph.D. Created in 2009, the Poets’ Circle is located within central campus where it utilizes donated hardscape elements to create an area of intellectual exhibition and serves as a multi-functional space. The plaques throughout the space have meaningful poems to inspire visitors and the space is framed by commemorative bricks from donors to the college. The Poets’ Circle is cared for by the Maintenance Department.


Established: 2009 Founded by: Professor Joseph Faryniarz and Paul Schwartz, Class of 2010 Pedagogical role: The Poets’ Circle celebrates the major works of poetry and encourages the college community to enjoy, to write and to share poetry. It is an area perfectly suited to meditation and contemplation. It is also used as focal point for veteran ceremonies.

Poets’ Circle | 19


Poets’ Circle | 21

HORTICULTURE GREENHOUSE The Horticulture Greenhouse is a 5,000-square-foot facility with aluminum framing and glass glazing. Completed at the same time as Technology Hall in 2008-09, the greenhouse provides a controlled laboratory for Greenhouse Management I, Greenhouse Management II, Plant Propagation & Hybridization, Fruit & Vegetable Production, Herbaceous Plants and Turf Management courses. The greenhouse is home to one head-house, one potting room, two growing areas (one for warm crops, one for cool crops), propagation mats, a mist system and hydroponics grow units. It is synchronized with a three-phase cooling system that utilizes natural evaporative cooling pads and side ventilators. The environment is regulated by an Enviro-Step interior climate system that automates temperature fluctuations based on operational inputs.


Established: 2009 Founded by: Naugatuck Valley Community College Pedagogical role:

The Greenhouse assists students in laboratory instruction in Greenhouse Management I & II, Fruits and Vegetable Production, Plant Propagation & Hybridization, Herbaceous Plants, Landscape Maintenance & Turf Management courses.

Horticulture Greenhouse | 23


Horticulture Greenhouse | 25

GLACIER RIDGE TRAIL The Glacier Ridge Trail system supports credit and non-credit learning activities in environmental science, ecology, botany, geology, archaeology, zoology, forestry, horticulture and popular interdisciplinary topics like landscape design, photography and gardening. In addition, the trails are actively used by the Center for Teaching for professional development “walk and talk� experiences, and by elementary, middle and high school teachers for field trips. The property was acquired by the State of Connecticut from the City of Waterbury to provide a site for higher education services and resources for the region. The original plans included the build-out of a sports and physical fitness complex on the west end of campus. After the property was more fully sited, however, it was determined that resources would not support the auxiliary facilities and 55 acres of land was left undeveloped. In 1998, leaders on campus reviewed a proposal from a local Eagle Scout candidate to develop a two-loop trail system on the land that would meet the education, recreation and fitness goals of the college and surrounding communities. Today, the trail continues to be utilized as a hands-on educational resource for the region. 26

Established: 1998 Founded by: Former Dean Dr. Larry Smotroff and local Eagle Scouts Pedagogical role: The evolution of the Glacier Ridge Trail invites students and members of the surrounding communities to learn, appreciate and explore nature, investigate and satisfy scientific curiosity and develop a greater sense of conservation and stewardship for our land.

Glacier Ridge Trail | 27


Glacier Ridge Trail | 29

WISNIEWSKI JAPANESE MEMORIAL GARDEN Under the direction of Eugene L. Wisniewski, former professor and program coordinator, the horticulture program not only made great strides in enrollment and expansion of course offerings, but also added the 5,000-square-foot state-of-the-art greenhouse, in which students learn today. The greenhouse opened just a few weeks before Professor Wisniewski’s untimely passing in October 2009. Former student Regina DelRossi designed the garden for Professor Wisniewski, who had long expressed a desire to create a contemplative Japanese garden on campus. DelRossi studied the history, philosophy and design and was meticulous in the placement of the stone lantern and the large boulders that represent mountains. The “dry river bed” flows between the two dominant trees - a weeping redbud and the Seven Sons Flower and is bordered by Japanese irises and Lady’s Mantle. Groundcovers, such as creeping juniper and mondo grass were utilized, as well as Irish moss and thyme as substitutes for real moss, which one often sees in the gardens of Kyoto. Of Professor Wisniewski, Ms. DelRossi said, “ was the gentle, quiet side of him that I liked best. He had a sweet smile. In a way, his personality was like a Japanese Garden, with special, secluded spots.” 30

Established: 2010 Founded by: Professor Robert Herman and Regina DelRossi, Class of 2010 Pedagogical role: The Japanese Garden assists

in Landscape Design, Landscape Maintenance and Woody Plants course instruction. The Garden also demonstrates the use of a designed space as a memorial.

Wisniewski Japanese Memorial Garden | 31


Wisniewski Japanese Memorial Garden | 33

WISNIEWSKI JAPANESE HEALING GARDEN The process of healing is an important piece of memorialization. The Eugene L. Wisniewski Japanese Healing Garden is a counterpart to the Memorial Garden, which was established in 2010. Modeled after traditional Japanese principles, the Healing Garden combines elements of simplicity and tranquility with a deep symbolism and layered texture. The plants selected for the project were chosen based on their adaptability to the site and their aesthetic qualities. The highlight of the garden is a riverbed of sedum, which is meant to provoke a sense of everlasting movement and continual growth. A series of stone outcroppings also dot the landscape, which establish beacons of permanence in this transforming garden. The artistic play of hard versus soft, stability versus transformation, and light versus dark create the deep symbolic meaning within the garden.


Established: 2013 Founded by: Professor Christopher Tuccio Pedagogical role: The Healing Garden assists landscape design students in their analysis of garden typologies in various studio classes.

Wisniewski Japanese Healing Garden | 35


Wisniewski Japanese Healing Garden | 37

SUSTAINABLE GARDEN Based on the growing interest in native plants and the movement to create more environmentally sound plantings, horticulture faculty decided to create a “sustainable” garden on campus in spring 2009. The total area consists of four gardens with diverse microclimates, all planted with native North American plants ideally suited to the environment in which they were planted. There are no exotic plants that could escape into the natural environment; the plants require no irrigation or fertilization and encourage wildlife by providing shelter and food, primarily berries and seeds, to wildlife. The gardens are multi-seasonal, starting with spring-blooming trout lilies, blue star and yellow false indigo and continue flowering into the late summer and fall, when the bright, colorful asters, perennial sunflowers and flowing, ornamental grasses dominate. Three hawthorn trees provide a striking background for the mountain laurel, hydrangea and fothergilla shrubs as well as ground covering plants such as golden star, Appalachian sedge and barren strawberry. Joe-Pye weed, lupines and switchgrass surround a flowering dogwood in an adjacent section. The gardens have become an “outdoor laboratory” for students in the horticulture program, assisting in plant identification and appreciation of their use in sustainable landscape design.


Established: 2009 Founded by: Professor Robert Herman, Professor Christopher Tuccio and NVCC horticulture students Pedagogical role: The Sustainable Garden

assists in Woody Plants, Herbaceous Plants, Landscape Design and Landscape Maintenance course instruction.

Sustainable Garden | 39


Sustainable Garden | 41

BIBLICAL GARDEN The Bible has long been an inspiration to humanity. Authors have written innumerable treasured masterworks based on its themes, metaphors and parables. From Geoffrey Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales to Herman Melville’s Moby Dick, William Faulker’s Absalom, Absalom!, John Milton’s Paradise Lost, or Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy, the tremendous impact of the Bible on human thought and writing remains unparalleled. The Biblical Garden provides a quiet respite - “Beside restful waters He leads me; He refreshes my soul” (Psalm 23). Amidst other symbols, the garden encompasses quotations for the 45 plants that can grow in this region. As a member of the Biblical Botanical Gardens Society - USA, this garden joins an increasing global movement to provide such places to augment campus and public life. The garden was dedicated in 2011, the 400th anniversary of the printing of the King James Bible (1611 A.D.).


Established: 2009 Founded by: Michael Schwartz (Class 2003), Paul Schwartz (Class 2009), David Freedman (Class 2011), and Professor Joseph Faryniarz Pedagogical role: This garden demonstrates the links between the Bible with literature, plants, and animals. It promotes greater class discussion of the greater meaning of classical literature.

Biblical Garden | 43


Biblical Garden | 45

MEDICINAL GARDEN Medicinal plants have been used since the dawn of humanity to treat a variety of maladies. Established by the Agro-Bio Club, the Medicinal Garden collection is meant to promote greater awareness of medicinal plants and their important contribution to society. Medically important plant species of 40 varieties comprise the garden collection, which is dedicated to the graduates of our medical health programs.


Established: 2010 Founded by: The Agro-Bio


Pedagogical role: This garden is the largest collection of medicinal plants in Connecticut. It promotes student interest in the use and culture of these important plants and is a botanical resource for our campus community and the public. It is cared for by horticulture students and Agro-Bio Club members.

Medicinal Garden | 47


Medicinal Garden | 49

ALCOVE PLANTING The Alcove Planting was commenced in spring 2011 to provide opportunities for maintaining a visual aesthetic while negotiating a severely sloped site. The existing site had been overgrown for years, with offices and windows from the third, fourth and fifth floors of Ekstrom Hall looking down upon the neglected landscape. To help make the area more aesthetically pleasing, plants were selected based on two primary criteria: the feasibility of growth on such a severely sloped site and the color/texture that would be viewed from the Ekstrom Hall windows. The intent of the final installation was to create a nice view while maintaining the integrity of the site. Additionally, soil erosion products were installed within the slope to be used for lab instruction for horticulture courses.


Established: 2010 Founded by: Professor Christopher Tuccio and NVCC horticulture students Pedagogical role: The Alcove planting demonstrates ways to negotiate harsh sloped conditions in small spaces through design and planting. Specific techniques are also used as examples in the Landscape Construction course.

Alcove Planting | 51


Alcove Planting | 53

EARTH-KIND ROSE TESTING SITE The Earth-Kind Rose Testing Site is a 4-year research project that began in fall 2011 in collaboration with Texas A&M University and the New York Botanical Garden (NYBG) with the objective of identifying sustainable rose cultivars. Trial sites include NVCC, the Coastal Maine Botanical Garden at Boothbay and the Central Park Rose Garden in Schenectady, NY. Data is collected by horticulture students and included in national publications. These test sites join Iowa State, Kansas State, Louisiana State, Minnesota, Nebraska and Wisconsin Universities along with the Boerner Botanical Gardens and the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. Uniquely, the NVCC test site is the only planting taking place on a steep bank. Overall, the national project supports rose research as well as public education into how EarthKind roses are capable of growing sustainably even in difficult sites. Approximately 48 different Earth-Kind cultivars were planted in spring 2012.


Established: 2011 Founded by: David L. Freedman, Class 2011, and Michael R. Schwartz, Campus Groundskeeper Pedagogical role: NVCC horticulture students have taken part in an ongoing research project in partnership with Texas A&M University and the New York Botanical Garden, that allows them to interact with other researchers on a national level.

Earth-Kind Rose Testing Site | 55


Earth-Kind Rose Testing Site | 57

American Rose Trials for Sustainability (A.R.T.S.) Garden NVCC is proud to be the home of the first national trial garden for the American Rose Trials for Sustainability (A.R.T.S.). Rose breeders from all over the world send their newest roses to our garden in order to see how they grow under the environmental conditions here in Waterbury, CT. A team of evaluators gathers data from the garden throughout the growing season and at the end of two years, a report is given back to the rose breeders on how their entrants fared in the trial. Additionally, the roses that do the best in each class receive the the A.R.T.S. Award. The roses are evaluated for their resistance to insect damage and diseases, as well as their overall horticultural usefulness in the landscape. These trials allow the host institutions to be an engine of change in the horticulture industry as a whole. As breeders receive the information provided by these field trials they will turn their hybridization efforts toward the goals of disease and insect resistance above anything else. This in turn translates into a greater independence from the use of chemical pesticides, an important industry shift. Construction of the A.R.T.S. Garden was supported by a bequest of Professor Eugene L. Wisniewski, an avid rose breeder, and by volunteers. 58

Established: 2013 Founded by: NVCC students and faculty Pedagogical role:

Horticulture and business students engage in the process of taking a new product to market, as the A.R.T.S. site is home to plants that are not yet available to consumers. Students take part in evaluation and gain valuable product development and research experience as they work in this garden.

American Rose Garden | 59


American Rose Garden | 61

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS Gardens are powerful representations of human values and aspirations. The gardens of Naugatuck Valley Community College inspire respect for nature and support learning about our earth and our environment. As teaching tools, they also embrace the concept of giving, nurturing, engagement and love that extend beyond the self. Their existence, care and nurture owe much to generous individuals, faculty, staff, students, associations and groups. Grateful recognition of selfless and talented contributions particularly go to: Dr. Daisy Cocco De Filippis, President James Troup, Provost and Senior Dean of Administration Waldemar Kostrzewa, Dean of Community Engagement The Alan J. Zinser Family Professor Eugene Wisniewski’s Bequest The Carl D. Perkins Grant Dr. Joseph Faryniarz, Professor of Biology Robert Herman, Professor of Horticulture

Christopher Tuccio, Professor of Horticulture Michael Schwartz, Groundskeeper Paul Schwartz, Horticulture Alumnus David Freedman, Horticulture Alumnus Regina DelRossi, Horticulture Alumnus Students in the Agro-Biology Club Student Government Association Students in the Culture for Peace Club

INDUSTRY AND COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIPS The following businesses and organizations have assisted in the development of Naugatuck Valley Community College gardens and in the continued success of the horticulture program through monetary and equipment donations, student scholarships, program advertisement and advice. Association for Professional Landscape Designers 4305 North Sixth Street, Suite A Harrisburg, PA 17110

The Connecticut Horticultural Society 2433 Main Street Rocky Hill, CT 06067

The Connecticut Nursery & Landscape Association The Connecticut Rhododendron Society 600 Main Street, Bart Center 5 Duncaster Wood Monroe, CT 06468 Granby, CT 06035 The Connecticut Greenhouse Growers Association 600 Main Street, Bart Center Monroe, CT 06468

The Waterbury Garden Club, FGCCT PO Box 854 Branford, CT 06405

The Connecticut Cactus & Succulent Society 30 Pine Street Columbia, CT 06237-1516

The Professional Landcare Network (PLANET) 950 Herndon Parkway, Suite 450 Herndon, Virginia 20170

The Gardens of Naugatuck Valley Community College

Map of Gardens on Campus

Dr. Daisy Cocco De Filippis President PUBLICATION OF Office of College Marketing and Public Relations WRITERS Christopher Tuccio Professor of Horticulture Dr. Joseph Faryniarz Professor of Biology Michael Schwartz Groundskeeper and Student ABOUT NVCC Naugatuck Valley Community College offers more than 100 accredited programs leading to associate degrees or professional certification and over 120 lifelong learning courses for professional development and workforce training. We are the only Connecticut community college to offer associate degree programs in aviation science, horticulture, digital arts and visual and performing arts, dance option.

Š 2013-14 Naugatuck Valley Community College 750 Chase Parkway, Waterbury, CT

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