Richard K. Sutton  Professor

Richard K. Sutton portrait

Contact Information
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Area of Focus

Ornamental Horticulture, Landscape Ecology, and Design
Program in Landscape Architecture (College of Architecture)


  • B.S., Forest Biology, Colorado State University, 1970
  • M.S., Landscape Architecture, Utah State University, 1974
  • Ph.D., Land Resources, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1997

Major Research Activities

  • Low Input Extensive Green Roofs
  • Native Plant Materials
  • Rural Landscapes
  • Landscape Assessment
  • Scale

Courses Taught

  • HORT/GEOG/LARC 200, Landscape & Environmental Appreciation
  • HORT/NRES/LARC 212, Landscape Plants I
  • HORT 265, Graphic Communication for Landscape Design
  • HORT 266, Introduction to Landscape Design
  • HORT 267, Introduction to Landscape Design Studio
  • HORT 300, Landscape Construction
  • HORT/LARC 498, Topics in Landscape Architecture
  • LARC 497/597 Green Roof Design, Construction and Management

Major Project Activities

  • UCARE Project Green Roof Plants
  • UCARE Project Landscape Plant CD
  • Pro Bono designs for:
    • Lincoln Public Schools
    • Veterans Park, Falls City, NE
    • Entry Road, Brunning, NE
  • Private Consultations--Landscape architecture services (selected projects):
    • LPS/NRD Conservation Easement Management Plan
    • Nebraska State Capitol Grounds Restoration
    • City of Lincoln: Plant materials for Holmes Lake restoration; median designs
    • Hastings campus Central Community College sustainable landscape master plan
    • Wyuka Cemetary, Lincoln NE, Urban wetland; urban stream bioengineering
    • Hebron, NE, River trail master plan

Selected Publications

  • Richard K. Sutton, John A. Harrington, Lee Skabelund, Peter MacDonagh, Reid R. Coffman, and Gord Koch PRAIRIE-BASED GREEN ROOFS: LITERATURE, TEMPLATES, AND ANALOGS. Journal of Green Building Winter 2012, Vol. 7, No. 1, pp. 143-172 (doi: 10.3992/jgb.7.1.143)
  • Sutton, Richard K. 2011. A Model of Human Scale Tested on Rural Landscape Scenes. Great Plains Research. 21(Fall 2011):215-30.
  • Rodie Steven, Kim Todd, Richard Sutton, Kelly Feehan, and Andy Szatko. 2010. Nebraska Bioretention and Rain Garden Plants Guide. UNL Cooperative Extension. Lincoln, NE
  • Latshaw, Kelsey, Jay B. Fitzgerald, and Richard K. Sutton. 2009. Analysis of Green Roof Growing Media Porosity. Review of Undergraduate Research in Agriculture and Life Sciences. Vol. 4 Issue 1
  • Sutton, R. K. 2008. Media Modifications for Native Plant Assemblages on Green Roofs, Proceedings of Greening Rooftops for Sustainable Communities. April 30-May 2, 2008, Baltimore Maryland.
  • Sutton. R. K. 2008. Impact of Growing Media on Native Grasses. Living Architecture Monitor (10(1) pp22-23.
  • Sutton, R. K. 2007. Using Tree-ring Dating in hedgerow management at Homestead National Monument of America. ParkScience. 24 (2) 57-61.
  • Wendy Mee, J. Barnes, R. Kjelgren, R. Sutton, T. Cerny, and C. Johnson. 2003. Waterwise: Native Plants for Intermountain Landscapes. Utah State University Press 220 pp. 600 color photographs.
  • Walter Bagley and Richard K. Sutton. 2002. Woody Plants for the Central and Northern Prairies Blackburn Press 604 pp. Illus.
  • Sutton, Richard K. 1998. "Ethics and Aesthetics in the Loss of Farmland". Chapter 6 in Under the Blade: The Conversionof Agricultural Landscapes. R. Olson and T Lyson (eds) Westview Press 459 pp.
  • Sutton, R.K., T. Boyle, R. Westmacott and V. Morrical. 1997. Cultivating the market for rural landscape architecture. In proceedings of the 1997 ASLA Meeting. C. Wagner (Ed.).
  • Bartlett, M., D. Beach and R.K. Sutton. 1996. "Urban Growth: Inside Out, Outside In" Renewing the American City. Proceeding of the American Society of Landscape Architects Annual Meeting. October 9, Cleveland, Ohio.
  • Rodie, S.N. and R.K. Sutton. 1995. "Defining Implementation and Management Issues for Sustainable urbanized Landscapes", Symposium Proceedings of Agriculture and People . . . Building a Share Environment. S.S. Waller and D. Dunca (eds.), UNL ARDC, October 9-10.
  • Sutton, Richard K. 1993. Review of 'Where?' Landscape Journal Vol. 11, No. 2.
  • Sutton, Richard K. 1992. "Landscape Ecology of Hedgerows and Fencerows in Panama Township", Lancaster County, Nebraska. Grain Plains Research. Vol. 2, No. 2. pp. 223-254. Fall.
  • Sutton, Richard K. 1991. "Not for the Tourist's Eyes Only: Willa Cather's Divide Landscape Today". Selected Works CELA Proceedings. Lois Brink (ed) Landscape Architecture Foundation/CELA Washington D.C. 219 pp.
  • Sutton, Richard K. 1985. "Rural Planting Relicts in Eastern Nebraska." Landscape Journal Vol 4 No. 2 pp 106-115.
  • Sutton, Richard K. 1977. "The Round Peg in the Square Hole: Center Pivot Irrigation in the Nebraska Landscape." Landscape Vol. 22 no. 1 pp. 3-10.

Awards and Professional Memberships

  • Recognition for Contributions to Students 1996, 2001, 2010
  • Gamma Tau Delta Honorary 2010
  • Fellow American Society of Landscape Architects 2009
  • Certified as Green Roof Professional 2009
  • Certificate for Outstanding Contributions to Undergraduate Research (UCARE) 2008
  • Outstanding Contribution to Undergraduate Research 2008
  • Holling Family Award for Teaching College of Agriculture and Natural Resources 2008
  • Honor Award for Research Great Plains Chapter, ASLA
  • Tree Planter State Award, Nebraska Statewide Arboretum 2007
  • Distinguished Alumnus Award, Utah State University, LAEP Department 2003
  • Registered Landscape Architect, Nebraska #131
  • Member Sigma Lambda Alpha, Landscape Architecture Honorary
  • Fellow Center for Great Plains Studies
  • Member International Association for Landscape Ecology
  • Member Green Roofs for Healthy Cities