Sustainability Topics

Planting Green Roofs: Sowing Seeds

With the installation of the green roof on Lang Performing Arts Center (our fifth green roof), we experimented with a new way of planting the vegetation: sowing seeds.  A year after the install, we are enjoying the initial success of this seed germination.

Sedum plugs laid out for planting. photo credit:R. Robert

As with our past roofs, we planted sedum and other green roof plants with small plugs and by spreading cuttings.  The install was completed by applying a slurry of seed. The seed mixture was combined with pourable fiber mulch and water. This slurry of seed was  applied with …

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What are those brown patches?

Although the combined 6 ½ acres of organic lawns below Parrish Hall are thriving, you might have noticed three large brown patches in front of Mertz Dorm. These are areas where we are killing off a pernicious weed, Cynodon dactylon, aka. wiregrass, bermudagrass, couchgrass, devilgrass, or dogtooth grass. It is a perennial turfgrass grown deliberately in southern regions in lawns, golf courses, and athletic fields.

This patch of lawn has been taken over by wiregrass. photo credit: R. Robert

It is one tough plant: some improved hybrids of the species can be maintained at a height of ¼”! It …

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Removing Invasive Vines

April was invasive plant, pest, and disease awareness month and a great time to remove invasives on your property. As part of our annual Crum Creek Clean-Up on April 29, volunteers continued our ongoing efforts to remove and control invasives in the Crum Woods.  Many large trees were liberated from the strangling vines of English ivy, naturalized wisteria, and Oriental bittersweet.  Home gardeners should attempt to remove these aggressive plants from their properties as well.

The large severed woody stem of the aggressive oriental bittersweet had a strangled hold on this tree. photo credit: R. Robert

Invasive vines compete with …

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