November 15, 2011
By Lee Ann Knudsen CLP

Your old friend Horticulture Review is suddenly Landscape Ontario magazine. I know this comes as a shock.

It might help to know that every change to your magazine was made for a reason.

Team members Mike Wasilewski, Allan Dennis, Sarah Willis, Steve Moyer, Shawna Barrett and I, as well as our volunteer advisory committee, hope the new brand and redesign strike you as a breath of fresh air. It was not undertaken lightly; hours of back-to-the-drawing board thought went into the transformation. Research shows magazine readers are conservative, and dislike change. However, the old magazine was a loosely organized patchwork. It was not a review of horticulture, and did not reflect LO’s Green for Life identity.

Where to start?

First step in the rethink was to recognize the magazine’s importance as a communications hub that helps LO succeed. Understanding that fact, association features and news now take their rightful place up-front. The news is followed by service information, including events and new members.

Industry news follows association news; information about Ontario’s green industry that does not fall under the LO umbrella.

Finally, columns bring up the end.

Updated look

With the organizational bones in place, it was time to address the magazine’s look. Our Green for Life brand was the logical spin-off. Beyond the brand, we selected typefaces and other format details to promote easy reading, foremost.

It is clear that Ontario’s green industry has a sophisticated design sense. I will never forget the statement made by a block of orange snapdragons in LO’s Blooms 2010 garden ... just one of countless examples. The industry brings high style alive through living palettes, water, light, all changing through the seasons. And the elegant spaces are all created by customer demand in an open, competitive market. Amazing. Your editorial team’s modest hope is that the redesign lives up to your industry’s standards.

Living legacy

Next year will mark this publication’s 30th birthday. To founder Rita Weerdenburg, we respect the magazine as a living community, and hope you approve of its renewal.

So once the shock wears off, with any luck Landscape Ontario magazine will reflect the vibrance of its readers, Landscape Ontario’s proud members.