Winter is a great time to experience the structural beauty of trees and shrubs through light and shadow. Ngoc recently took a trip to the Radcliffe Sunken Garden and got some great photos of the plants under a fresh blanket of snow. The wide branching structures of the garden’s witch hazels, oaks, and elms create a dramatic shadow play under the sun that is truly unique to the season.



This month SSA gathered as a team and a family to celebrate the holiday season and the year’s end. Wishing everyone good health, happiness, and peace for the new year ahead!

MAY 2017

SSA visits the Arnold Arboretum

With spring in full force, Michael and Glen recently led the crew on a plant walk at the Arnold Arboretum. Part of Boston’s iconic Emerald Necklace, the Arboretum covers over 280 acres across the Jamaica Plain and Roslindale neighborhoods. SSA spent the afternoon exploring the extensive collection of trees, shrubs, and vines, delighting in the vibrant colors and textures of the season in bloom.

APRIL 2017

SSA Spring Dig at Charbrook Nursery

Last week, our designers had the opportunity to step out into the spring air and participate in Charbrook Nursery’s annual tree dig. Using Charbrook’s new tree spade, yards of burlap, and intricate knots, the team dug and bound trees and shrubs of various sizes and species, to be installed in projects throughout New England over the coming year.



Ferrous signage – in the shop

SSA is digging into a series of signage options for the recently opened Ferrous Site Park in Lawrence, MA. We are currently studying a timber entry sign made from Black Locust trees that had fallen on site. After being taken to a local shop to be milled, the timbers were then transported to a nearby metal fabricator, who is working with us to develop steel forms that will be used to “brand” (burn) the name across a series of upright timbers. Stay tuned as this process unfolds!



SSA is delighted to have one of our Principals, Edward Marshall, lecture at the 28th Annual Landscape Design Symposium at both Connecticut College on Friday January 13th, and again at the Morris Arboretum on Friday January 20th. His talk focuses on how SSA’s Charbrook Nursery informs and advances our design.


Quarry Point Residence

SSA has been carefully observing the construction of the Quarry Point Residence located in Cohasset, MA. This project is the result of a close partnership with Catalano Architects, ensuring that the architecture and landscape work together to celebrate the natural features of the site. All of the stonework was fabricated from on site ledge removal. This was a sustainable practice while also allowing the walls and terraces to better blend with their surroundings. The project includes an elaborate coastal bank restoration, as well as the use of native plantings, such as the tupelo from our own Chabrook Nursery.


SSA celebrated the holiday season with our annual evening at Charbrook Farm. The food was wonderful, the drink festive, and the Yankee Swap hysterical. Santa even sent three of his reindeer to help mc the evening and ensure no one was unruly during what is always a competitive gift exchange. We at SSA want to wish you all a wonderful holiday seaason and a very happy and healthy New Year.


ASLA 2016

This week SSA is travelling to New Orleans to take part in the largest “landscape” event of the Year: The American Society of Landscape Architects Annual Meeting & Expo. This year SSA will not only receive an ASLA award in the Residential Category for our Chilmark Residence, but participate in two presentations at the conference. Milee Pradhan and Greg Tuzzolo will be presenting as part of a PPN Meeting to discuss “Digital Technology and 21st Century High-Performance Campus Landscapes,” and Joe Wahler will be moderating a session entitled “Down and Dirty: Planting’s Hard Truths and Lessons Learned,” with colleagues Kelly Lewis, Kelby Fite, John Swallow and Michael Igo. We look forward to seeing all of our friends and colleagues throughout the next few days.


Williams College New Quad

SSA was thrilled to welcome the students of Williams College back to campus with the completion of their new Sawyer Quad. For the past three years SSA has worked closely with the school designing a new quad to appropriately re-frame the renovated Stetson Library and the long views toward the Green Mountains. The college was very supportive with the vision of using local marble from nearby Vermont to help frame and shape the edges of the quad, and pay tribute to the region’s rich history with the material and masonry. The positive response to the design is best recorded by a senior student, Malcolm Moutenot, in an article in the Williams Record referencing that SSA ‘crushes landscape design for higher learning institutions and prep schools in New England.’ Well done!