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Delaware Department of Transportation

Enhancing Delaware Highways

Roadside Vegetation Concept and Planning Manual

  • Complete Manual
  • For users on slower connections, we offer four segmented downloads.
  • Covers
  • Inside Cover
  • Acknowledgements
  • Preface
  • Table of Contents
  • Introduction
    • Benefits and rationale for roadside landscape design and management
    • Objectives of the manual
    • Audiences for the manual
  • History and Tradition of Roadside Vegetation
    • Legislation relevant to roadside vegetation
    • History of roadside landscape design
    • Elements of landscape as they apply to roadsides
  • Public Opinion
  • Design Opportunities and Limiting Factors
    • Defining roadside zones
    • Clear zone distances
    • Drainage issues
    • Utility locations
    • Lines of sight
    • Erosion control
    • Functions of roadside vegetation
  • Landscape Planning Process
    • Site inventory
    • Roadway limitations
    • Climate and growth conditions
    • Cultural and historical characteristics
    • Design approach description and selection
    • Regional approach
    • Regional-ornamental approach
    • Fully ornamental approach
    • Selection
    • Landscape layers and elements
    • Ground layer
    • Shrub layer
    • Tree layer
    • Installation and maintenance strategies
    • Editing
    • Cutting back
    • Routine mowing
    • Periodic
    • Discontinued mowing
    • Deliberate planting
    • Illustrated examples
    • Examples of the regional design approach
    • Examples of the regional-ornamental design approach
    • Examples of the fully ornamental design approach
  • The Plant Palette: Charts by Plant Type
  • Cost Analysis
  • Appendices
    • Appendix A: Checklists-Inventory of Site Conditions
    • Appendix B: Cross Reference of Plant Palette by Common Name
    • Appendix C: Illustrated Plant Palette: Selected Examples
    • Appendix D: Recommended References
  • Literature Cited
  • Glossary
  • Index
Written, edited and prepared by:
Susan Barton, University of Delaware
Rick Darke, Rick Darke LLC
Gary Schwetz, Delaware Center for Horticulture
Graphic Design by: Carrie Finnie

Produced under contract with the Delaware Department of Transportation,
Nathan Hayward III, Secretary

April 2005

A copy of this manual is available free of charge by e-mailing Kathleen Turner  at the University of Delaware.


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