Date of Award

Spring 6-1-2024

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Landscape Architecture (MLA)


Landscape Architecture


Nature-Culture-Sustainability Studies

First Advisor

Larissa Belcic

Second Advisor

Ann Kearsley


Plants play a crucial role in sustaining life on Earth and remediating pollution, making them indispensable components of ecosystems. However, their efforts in combating pollution are often overlooked and underappreciated by humans. This oversight can lead to a failure to recognize the severity of pollution and raises ethical concerns about using plants merely as tools for pollution control. This thesis advocates for acknowledging the essential role of plants in mitigating pollution caused by human activities and emphasizes the need to respect and protect their intrinsic value. The methodology of this research involves developing landscapes that honor and recognize the vital contributions of plants to the survival of the planet and its human inhabitants, while fostering empathy and transformative behaviors in humans. Strategies include highlighting the brutal battles and sacrifices of non-human vulnerable groups within ecosystems in their fight against pollution and revealing the pivotal role plants play in healing our shared environment. By exploring the similarities between human and plant life milestones, the project aims to create a multispecies ethnography that fosters empathy for plants. The significance of this thesis lies in its dual approach. In the short term, it aims to raise awareness about the role of plants in phytoremediation and encourage human participation in pollution mitigation efforts, leading to more consistent actions against pollution. In the long term, it calls for a reevaluation of natural rights and the ethical relationships between humans and other non-human species, ultimately promoting a future of multispecies harmony and sustainable development.



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