In 1975, former Director Willard Barbee appointed Wilbur “Bud” Dasenbrock as Park Horticulturist for the Nebraska Game and Parks. Bud ambitiously began a Park Landscape Services section of the Parks Division to assist the dedicated Superintendents who manage our 87 Park and Recreation with various landscape improvement and maintenance projects. Bud still resides in Lincoln with his wife Betty and he volunteers many hours at Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital improving their gardens and landscape. Bud is also a busy gardener and grower of trees, giving them to anyone who promises to plant and care for them. I would like to dedicate this article to Bud for his vision and efforts in starting our landscape program. Since its inception the program grew to employ three full time Horticulturists. Currently myself, Jon Morgenson and Steve Brey, along with some dedicated seasonal staff, work on a wide variety of landscaping, forestry and arboriculture projects at the parks you might visit.
Staff at Game and Parks are currently working hard through our website to get people interested and actively participating in outdoor activities. Biologists and other staff are “blogging” to keep you informed and up to date on what is happening on Commission Properties and suggest how to enjoy outdoor activities. We have been invited to participate in this process by developing occasional, short articles on landscape related subjects that will be posted on NEBRASKAland Magazine’s Afield and Afloat blog under “The Green Team” moniker. With these posts, we hope to encourage you to step outside and look at and appreciate elements or our beautiful Nebraska landscape. Granted our landscape is far different than the Rocky Mountains or California seashore, but there is beauty here, and we all should take time to enjoy it. So we hope to showcase some of the special plants and places we encounter while performing our work around the state. From time to time, we might illustrate some of our own park landscape projects.
Through these short articles we also hope to have an occasional inspiration of intelligence in suggesting how you might create a piece of paradise in your own backyard. We hope you might even consider “going green,” if even in a small way. We certainly won’t solve global warming, but we might offer a few tips on how to conserve resources on your property.
As you can see, we have provided great latitude on our subject matter, and are likely to be quite random in beginning the series, so we will see how it goes. Keep in mind; we are not scientists, so we don’t plan to impress you with technical terms. Also, we won’t attempt to replace the Backyard Farmer Forum, produced by the University of Nebraska. We just hope to broaden your perspective about landscaping and have some fun sharing our sometimes whimsical ideas. Beware that our wives sometimes think we are odd nuts and you might too.