Recent scholarly work has shifted our attention to the ways in which gardens negotiated the particularities of their ecological situation. New studies look at the archaeology of gardens, a fundamentally architectural shift which excavates issues of resource use. Materially specific research which sets gardens back into their hydraulic and topographic context has illuminated new dimensions of their inventive praxis. Many gardens turn out, in fact, to have been very carefully constructed in relation to a sensitive reading of local hydrological conditions. What is more, the facts of these sources seem also to be integrally enmeshed with their spatial and poetic aspects, providing salutary examples as our attention returns to what we are now calling sustainability.