Heaviland has developed Eco-Friendly Landscape Specifications to help San Diego Property and Facility Managers reduce the ecological footprint of their properties.
Traditional landscape management practices in San Diego have relied heavily on chemical and natural resource inputs such as synthetic fertilizer, inorganic pesticides and large amounts of imported water. Heaviland created a San Diego version of the Bay-Friendly Landscape Program that promotes soil health, water conservation, clean air, waste reduction and wildlife habitat protection.
Numerous case studies produced by the independent non-profit Bay-Friendly Landscape Program have proven how an ecologically focused set of landscape specifications can reduce water consumption, pollution and waste.
Seven Eco-Friendly Principles
The specification framework is based on these principles:
- Landscape locally. Use native and climate-appropriate plant material. Irrigate with storm and reclaimed water (where possible). If it doesn’t grow here naturally, replace it with plant material that could survive with little or no outside assistance.
- Send less to the landfill. Over-watering and fertilizing leads to a need for more pruning, resulting in excessive waste. A good alternative is to reduce irrigation and fertilization. Also, reuse grass and plant clippings as a natural fertilizer instead of contributing to landfill waste.
- Nurture the soil. Protect it from compaction and erosion. Replenish organic matter and mulch. Use slow-release and organic fertilizers, and minimize the use of chemicals that harm beneficial soil organisms.
- Conserve water. Reduce irrigation requirements by watering according to plant need. You should also maximize irrigation system performance and increase the water holding capacity of the soil. Use recycled and storm water where possible.
- Conserve energy. According to Yale University, over 600 million gallons of fuel is used each year to mow and trim lawns. Heaviland is testing the effectiveness of battery operated landscaping equipment and adding hybrids to its vehicle fleet. We’ve also replaced equipment operated by two-stroke motors with four-stroke ones. Four-stroke motors are more fuel efficient and produce less exhaust. They’re not fueled with an oil/gas mixture, like two-strokes.
- Protect water and air quality. Reduce water runoff by adjusting the irrigation, mulching bare soil and improving the he soil’s ability to absorb water. Planting more trees, which produce oxygen and absorb air pollutants, help improve air quality.
- Protect and maintain wildlife habitat. Most properties provide food, water, shelter and nesting sites for birds and other animals that contribute to ecological diversity. Methods to protect them include minimizing the application of chemicals and conserving flowers and other natural vegetation in open spaces.
Heaviland Landscape Management employs ecological sustainability experts. They are educated in through programs like the Watershed Wise Landscape Professionals and the Lyle Center for Regenerative Studies. Our skilled landscape designers and managers can develop a site specific approach that can make your property environmentally and economically sustainable.
If you’re a Property, Facility, Community or Apartment Manager and looking for ways to make your property more sustainable while reducing your water consumption, contact Heaviland today at firstname.lastname@example.org