Dr. John C. Peterson


Sensory Gardening,  ORH 2752

Course Description:

A hands-on, multidisciplinary approach to environmental horticulture delivered through the context of the human senses. Class activities, assignments, and projects are designed to enhance students’ awareness and understanding of how horticulture relates to the natural and built world, as well as the ways in which people perceive those worlds.


This course provides an introduction to environmental horticulture with emphasis on the relationship between plants and the human sensory experience and the impact of plant sciences on the daily lives of humans. To be responsible and effective practitioners of environmental horticulture, students should understand not only the environment and the plants used in landscapes, but also the ways in which humans use, experience, and are affected by plants. Students will gain a fundamental understanding of people-plant interactions that they may not obtain from courses where primary emphasis is on identification, use, or management of plants and landscapes.

Learning Objectives:

Upon completion of this course, students will be able to:

  • Describe the basic biological functions of the human sensory organs
  • Assess uses of plants and explain how they relate to sensory perception
  • Demonstrate ways in which plants affect the sensory experience
  • Analyze the relationships between people and plants from biological and social perspectives
  • Interpret the effects of plant blindness on individuals and cultures
  • Evaluate roles of plants and human senses on adaptation and global distribution of people and plants


Annual and Perennial Gardening Lab,  ORH 4804L

Course Description:

The lab concentrates on the production, identification, use, and management of herbaceous annuals and perennials in the Florida landscape.

Learning Objectives: 

At the conclusion of this course, the student will be able to:

  • Identify 100+ annual and perennial plants by common and scientific name.
  • Understand the cultural needs of certain annuals and perennials in production.
  • Apply an understanding of site selection, preparation, design, installation and maintenance by creating and maintaining an annual/perennial landscape project.
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Professor John C. Peterson