LEAF REPORT: May 2018

LEAF REPORT: May 2018

LEAF REPORT: May 2018

The winter season in Calgary has provided us with lots of snow which when it melts gets absorbed into the ground and hopefully will help improve the health of our trees. The trees in Edgemont had a rough time coping with the long period of intense heat last summer.

Our contractor, Able Landscaping will begin the Edgemont green space clean up in May, weather permitting.

There will be new planting pots placed throughout the community and our established ones are to be leveled as necessary.

May is a very unpredictable month weather wise and the gardeners prefer to plant after June 1. This helps to avoid unnecessary plant destruction and plant replacement. The plantings are usually scheduled to arrive in most LEAF communities the first week of June. The plants will be left in the pots and beds until our first hard frost hits in late fall.

Why are we using Planters on medians in Edgemont?

The LEAF committee has received a number of comments regarding the use of planters on medians, as opposed to flowerbeds. The use of planters has been carefully researched in order to make this decision.

The reasons for using planters are:

The cost:

  • Flowerbeds are costly due to site preparation, additions of loam mixture, bigger areas require more flowers.
  • They are subjected to the high use of salt/sand mixture on the roads in the winter, which makes the soil too alkaline for growing flowers.
  • Depending on the location of the flowerbed, the soil may need replacing every few years.
  • Some communities have removed some of their flowerbeds and replaced them with planters, for this reason. We were proactive in avoiding this circumstance to happen in Edgemont
  • Flowerbeds in Edgemont are planted in areas that are further away from the roadways so they are not subjected to the high use of salt/sand mixture.

The advantage of pot inserts

Planters allow for inserts of flowerpots that have been pre-planted earlier and already have a head start to grow in our short spring/summer season.

Safety issues:

  • Planters and flowerbeds must meet the requirements of the City of Calgary Road regulations and must have a safety clearance on all sides depending on the site.
  • Safety is a huge concern to landscape crews working on flowerbed medians that are in the middle of a major thoroughfare or intersection.
  • Raised flower planters are easier to work in and will reduce repetitive injuries from working at ground level.
  • Flowerbeds require more maintenance due to the catching of litter strewn by winds and more weed seeds being spread.
  • Edgemont Boulevard has several utilities throughout the median, including a gas line, fibre optics, sanitary sewer, telephone and cable. This does not allow for digging any flowerbeds in this median.

Planters help avoid Vole Damage

Some of our flowerbeds have been subject to vole damage, particularly the flowerbed on Edgebrook Boulevard and Edgeridge View. These rodents have chewed on the base of our flowers and have also eaten the roots of shrubs. We are considering redesigning this flowerbed for this reason.

You may observe the damage the voles make to your lawns over the winter. They chew the grass blades and leave runways all over your lawn. Voles are also known as Meadow Mice, as they are similar in size with a darker color and a shorter tail.

For more information on voles please refer to this article:

http://www.calgary.ca/CSPS/Parks/Pages/Planning-and-Operations/Pest-Management/Voles.aspx

The LEAF Team

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