Professor Ross Cameron

BSc, PhD

Department of Landscape Architecture

Senior Lecturer

A profile photo of Ross Cameron
Profile picture of A profile photo of Ross Cameron
+44 114 222 0614

Full contact details

Professor Ross Cameron
Department of Landscape Architecture
Arts Tower
Western Bank
S10 2TN

I am a landscape horticulturalist specializing in the use and value of landscape plants.

My current research interests centre around green infrastructure and climate change mitigation, with a strong emphasis on providing recommendations on plant species choice with respect to ecosystem function (city cooling, thermal insulation, flood tolerance, biodiversity enhancement).

This includes currently supervising PhD projects on improving the thermal performance of buildings through appropriate plant selection e.g. on both green walls and green roofs.

I am also interested in identifying those plant species robust enough to tolerate urban conditions (both current and future), whilst meeting their specifications for performance. Recent studies include investigations into Mediterranean species that tolerate winter flooding, and how warmer autumns affect the development of young ornamental trees.

Research interests
  • Benefits of urban plants as determined by plant species choice
  • Gardens / Gardening for health and well-being
  • Climate change and urban plants
  • Green walls and building insulation 
  • Landscape plants and urban water management

Developing more sustainable landscape management techniques is a key driver in much of my research, and I have been involved in a number of projects investigating more efficient use of resources (water, organic waste streams as soil amendments, alternative growing media and energy).

I led a DEFRA LINK project - Efficient use of water in horticulture which proposed a 2/3 reduction in water use during the production of ornamental plants. This project involved 14 partner organizations and was rated 9/10 by DEFRA – one of the highest-ranking scores at the time.

I have also more recently conducted projects evaluating the use of grey water for landscape applications. I work closely with industry partners, for example, the Horticultural Trades Association on the ‘carbon footprint’ of plant production and maintenance; and the Royal Horticultural Society on maximizing invertebrate biodiversity through the appropriate use of garden ornamentals.

As a landscape horticulturalist, I also am very keen to understand more about how people relate to the landscape and what sorts of plant-based designs provide strong resonance with the public and why?

I am particularly interested in the relationship between plants, ‘naturalistic’ landscapes and human well-being. As such I have worked on a number of consultations with stakeholders in this field, including MIND, the horticultural therapy charity THRIVE, The Royal Neurological Hospital and the Landscape Institute.

Funded Research Projects

  • 2011 National Horticultural Fellowship (HDC/EMT/ HTA) – Nutrient management in ornamentals
  • 2011 Establishment and management of Malaysian landscape ornamentals (Malaysian Gov.)
  • 2010 Evaluating the potential of the non-grass lawn (various sponsors)
  • 2010 Green roof plant species for the Mediterranean climate (Portuguese Gov.)
  • 2010 RHS KTP – Plants for BUGS
  • 2008 HTA Investigating the environmental impacts of gardening in the UK
  • 2007 HDC Optimising leaf defoliation in young trees
  • 2007 Grantscape- Market development for lower grade composts
  • 2006 HDC Bedding plants – benchmarking current transport
  • 2006 RHS Waterlogging intolerance and its remediation in Mediterranean plants
  • 2004-2011 RHS Physiological development in garden plants.
  • 2003-2011 HTA Reviews for ‘Plant for life’
  • 2002 DEFRA Conventional and biotechnological genetic improvement of hardy nursery stock
  • 2002 DEFRA To identify and overcome constraints to the efficient and consistent production of HNS in the UK.
  • 2002 EU Framework Programme V. Improving Fraxinus (Ash) productivity for European needs by testing, selection, propagation and promotion of improved genetic resources.
  • 2002 DEFRA Hortlink Improving the control and efficiency of water use in container-grown hardy ornamental nursery stock.

Areas of Potential Research Degree Supervision

  • Landscape plants and ecosystem services
  • Plant adaptation to stress
  • Habitat Management
  • Plant-people relationships


  • Cameron R & Hitchmough J (2016) Environmental Horticulture: Science and Management of Green Landscapes. Croydon: Cabi. View this article in WRRO RIS download Bibtex download

Journal articles


  • Zhai X, Cameron R & Lange E (2023) Wetland Parks in Guangzhou: Ecosystem Services and Perception, The Urban Book Series (pp. 285-299). Springer International Publishing RIS download Bibtex download
  • Cameron RWF (2017) Nursery Stock and Houseplant Production, Encyclopedia of Applied Plant Sciences (pp. 228-235). Elsevier RIS download Bibtex download
  • Cameron RWF (2017) Amenity Horticulture, Encyclopedia of Applied Plant Sciences (pp. 186-192). Elsevier RIS download Bibtex download
  • Cameron RW (2015) Health, well-being and socio-cultural benefits In Ingram DS, Vince-Prue D & Gregory P (Ed.), Science and the Garden: The Scientific Basis of Horticultural Practice, 3rd Edition 392 pages December 2015, Wiley-Blackwell Wiley. RIS download Bibtex download
  • Cameron RWF (2014) Interior landscapes, Horticulture: Plants for People and Places, Volume 2: Environmental Horticulture (pp. 763-786). RIS download Bibtex download
  • Cameron RWF (2014) Health and well-being, Horticulture: Plants for People and Places, Volume 3: Social Horticulture (pp. 1001-1023). RIS download Bibtex download
  • Cameron RWF (2014) Interior Landscapes, Horticulture: Plants for People and Places, Volume 2 (pp. 763-786). Springer Netherlands RIS download Bibtex download
  • Cameron RWF (2014) Health and Well-Being, Horticulture: Plants for People and Places, Volume 3 (pp. 1001-1023). Springer Netherlands RIS download Bibtex download

Conference proceedings papers

  • Ismail SNH, Cameron R & Stovin V (2018) Improving the functionality of the “sponge” – Does plant choice matter?. SUDSnet International Conference. Coventry, UK, 30 August 2018 - 31 August 2018. RIS download Bibtex download
  • Ismail SNH, Cameron R & Stovin V (2018) Evapo-transpiration traits of ground cover landscape plants that aid stormwater management in urban areas. World Green Infrastructure Congress, 4 June 2018 - 6 June 2018. RIS download Bibtex download
  • Ismail SNH, Stovin VR & Cameron RWF (2017) Rainfall interception and retention by different vegetation covers under simulated rainfall. Proceedings of Green Infrastructure: Nature Based Solutions for Sustainable and Resilient Cities, 4 April 2017 - 7 April 2017. RIS download Bibtex download
  • Cameron RWF, Wilkinson S, Davies WJ, Harrison-Murray RS, Dunstan D & Burgess C (2004) Regulation of plant growth in container-grown ornamentals through the use of controlled irrigation. Acta Horticulturae, Vol. 630 (pp 305-312) RIS download Bibtex download


Research group

Designed Ecology

Teaching interests
  • Director of Research
  • Director – Centre for Urban Biodiversity, University of Reading - 2008 onwards
  • Director – Student Career Development
  • Deputy Director – Centre for Horticulture and Landscape - 2002 onwards
  • Admission Tutor - B.Sc. Biological Sciences 2006-2010
  • External Examiner – University of Greenwich 2008
Teaching activities
  • LSC 235 Landscape Ecology - Habitat Survey Techniques
  • LSC 335 Landscape Ecology - Habitat Creation and Restoration
  • LSC 5210 Habitat Management
  • LSC 6008 Greenspace Maintenance
  • LSC 6023 Research Methods in Landscape
  • LSC 6024 Contemporary Issues in Landscape Research
  • LSC 6150 Appreciation of Landscape
Professional activities and memberships


Academic Member of the Landscape Institute (Royal Chartered Body for Landscape Architects in the United Kingdom).
Invited scientific ‘advisor’ to:

  • The Agriculture and Horticultural Development Council. (Landscape and Ornamental Horticulture Panel)
  • The Royal Horticultural Society.
  • The ‘Plant for Life’ and ‘Greening the UK’ initiatives.
  • Thrive (UK’s largest Horticultural Therapy Charity). 2003-2011

Extra Mural and Professional Activities

My professional activities are focused around climate change adaptation and more efficient use of resources, with advice being sought by Government and Industry.

For example, my work with the ‘Greening the UK’ initiative has informed DEFRA’s latest white paper and policy formation in general. In addition, I have had direct engagement with 3 different UK Secretaries of State in the last 2 years and 4 invitations to attend parliamentary committees.

My contribution to impact extends to numerous media appearances and broadcasts, including national radio and television. I have also won a number of awards for my teaching and contributions to enhancing student employability.