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Discussion in 'Nature/Habitat/Garden Corner' started by OSimpson, Jul 5, 2018.

  1. OSimpson

    OSimpson Certified Master Naturalist

    Sep 24, 2006
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    Taking Broadlands to the next level with Wildlife Habitat Community Certification...

    Please read below and consider signing the Petition.

    Living in a healthy environment is important to me as a Loudoun County resident. As a community resident who is served by a Homeowners Association, I would like to join with other residents of Loudoun County in asking my HOA to use more sustainable landscaping practices. Doing so would improve the health of our environment, limit exposure to pesticides and fertilizers, and reduce out-of-pocket costs.

    Sustainable landscaping practices include:

    • Reducing pesticide use -- Better for the health of people, pets and pollinators.
    • More effective fertilizer management -- Saves money and reduces excess runoff and pollution of streams.
    • Planting native shrubs and perennials -- Improves soil health. Requires less mowing which means less use of fossil fuels. It also means more food/habitat for beneficial insects and birds.
    • Planting more (native) trees -- Trees provide better stormwater management than turf, they increases groundwater infiltration, provide more shade and comfort for residents, and better habitat & food sources for beneficial insects and birds.
    • Eliminating the ornamental use of invasive non-natives -- Avoids spread and competition with native plants
    • Removal of invasive plants in natural areas -- Allows natural balance and healthier ecosystems

    • More than 60% of Loudoun residents live in an HOA-community. If we all pursue healthier, more sustainable landscaping practices, it can make a real difference.

    • Thank you.
    KTdid likes this.
  2. latka

    latka Active Member

    Sep 5, 2002
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    That is very vague.
  3. The Broadlands Community

    The Broadlands Community Well-Known Member

    May 13, 2014
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    How Broadlands and HLS are already working to address the issues stated:

    Reducing Pesticide Use- While the state requires the posting of Pesticide/Herbicide signs whenever any application is made, pesticide is only used when there is a known infestation of pests on the property. When the infestation is identified a pest selective pesticide is applied to control the site of the invasion. We perform weed control which is in compliance with the nutrient management plan approved by the Virginia Cooperative Extension.

    More Effective Fertilizer Management- In order to reduce the amount of run off, each application for Broadlands is a liquid application so that the fertilizer is applied and taken up directly by the lawn. Effective use of fertilizer is very important in reducing the need for herbicides as the most effective deterrent to invasive weeds is a good stand of turf. We worked with the Loudoun County Master Gardener’s Association and the Virginia Cooperative Extension, Loudoun County Office to create a nutrient management plan. We test soil samples annually and comply with their recommended guidelines for lime application and fertilization. We use mulching lawn mowers. The clippings are cut into fine pieces that fall easily to the soil surface. There, they can be rapidly broken down by soil microorganisms, which release nutrients from the mulched plant material back into the soil. This practice was praised by the plan. We also aerate and overseed, both of which are recommended and compliant with the nutrient management plan.

    Planting Native Shrubs and Perennials- Plantings are made throughout the community using a balanced mix of native and non-native species in order to reduce turf areas while providing aesthetically pleasing points of interest for the community. We install many native shrubs and perennials such as Climbing Hydrangea, Inkberry, and Viburnum to name a few. We have also introduced pollinators through perennials.

    Planting More Native Trees- As trees throughout the community die, we assess whether the replacement of a tree is necessary and depending on location, which trees are satisfactory to the site specifications which may include screening requirements, sound barrier, shade or sun, size, and many other requirements. This is imperative in order to reduce the need for care upon installation as well as the warranty and cost implications of the community. Many of the trees we plant are natives such as Red Maple, Honey Locust, Sycamore, and River Birch to name a few.

    Eliminating the ornamental use of non-natives- Native plants are important to the local ecosystem. Plantings such as the ones that have been completed at the nature center help to add native plants to the community landscape. We reduce non-natives in the community as appropriate.

    Removal of invasive plants in natural areas-A large project commenced within the past year that focuses on the removal of invasive understory growth throughout the natural areas of the community. The removal of these invasive plants allows the natural understory growth to regain its foothold on the areas. We foresee this being an ongoing project/battle.

    Additionally, Broadlands has been a non-irrigated site for over a decade which saves water and is better for the environment.

    PDILLM Well-Known Member

    Jul 28, 2009
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    Is there a petition against the petition?
  5. KTdid

    KTdid Well-Known Member

    Jun 14, 2006
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    I recently observed HLS removing invasives and tossing the (vines, creepers, etc) back into the wooded areas where they will easily take root again. I was told the HOA is not paying for disposal, only the removal. So yes, I 'foresee this being an ongoing project battle.'

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