Overall Rating Platinum - expired
Overall Score 87.10
Liaison Alex Davis
Submission Date March 5, 2020

STARS v2.2

Arizona State University
OP-9: Landscape Management

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.00 / 2.00 Alex Davis
Asst. Director
University Sustainability Practices
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Total campus area:
1,600.52 Acres

Figures required to calculate the total area of managed grounds:
Area (double-counting is not allowed)
Area managed organically, without the use of inorganic fertilizers and chemical pesticides, fungicides and herbicides 29.40 Acres
Area managed in accordance with an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program that uses selected chemicals only when needed 1,337.39 Acres
Area managed using conventional, chemical-based landscape management practices 32.16 Acres
Total area of managed grounds 1,398.95 Acres

A brief description of any land excluded from the area of managed grounds:

Total area of managed grounds calculated based on:
(Total area) - (Building Footprint) = Managed Grounds

Tempe, Polytechnic, Lake Havasu City, Phoenix Municipal Stadium, Downtown, and West locations.

Percentage of grounds managed organically:

A brief description of the organic landscape management program:

The organic landscaping program applies to a few different areas at ASU:
- The former "driving range" land at the Polytechnic campus is maintained through mowing but no chemical treatments are applied
- The Desert Arboretum on the Tempe campus is maintained without chemicals
- Community garden spaces

In our community garden spaces the following practices are used:
- No pesticides or herbicides are used, only organic sprays when needed.
- Crop rotation practiced.
- Only organic soil amendments are used in the beds.
- Green waste composted on site and put back into garden beds.
- Cardboard used as a mulch to deter Bermuda grass from growing.
- Lady bugs have been released into the garden as a form of pest control.

Percentage of grounds managed in accordance with an IPM program:

A copy of the IPM plan or program:

A brief description of the IPM program:

ASU currently looks to the UC IPM guidelines from the University of California for best practices in IPM. Weeds are mechanically removed whenever practicable. When necessary, weeds in landscaped areas, ROWs and turf are controlled with herbicides labeled “Caution” only. Insect pests are managed with organic based products including BT, insecticidal soaps or diatomaceous earth. “Caution” labeled insecticides may only be used in case of extreme infestations that may not otherwise be controllable. Wildlife is present on our campuses and is generally left unmolested except when populations become untenable or when the wildlife presents a health or safety risk. Wildlife observed include ants, aphids, bees, mosquitoes, roaches, diverse rodents, bats, cats, coyotes, foxes and pigeons. When necessary animals are trapped and released. The population of feral cats is significant and ASU works with local volunteer organizations to execute a continuous trap, neuter and release program.

A brief description of the institution's approach to plant stewardship:

The Tempe campus is a registered Arboretum with an extensive collection of plants. It encourages the use of Native Plants where appropriate. Since there is a limited palette of native trees to this area, the Tempe campus Arboretum also uses non native plants. Only non-native plants and trees that are adapted to the heat of our Sonoran desert climate are selected by the Office of the University Architect's landscape architects. The landscape architects specify the plant material for all of the ASU campuses. The Tempe campus does not have a problem with invasive species.

The West campus has an extensive collection of native trees in their arboretum east of the Faculty Administration Building.

The Polytechnic campus is a registered desert arboretum. It maintains native plant species specific to the Sonoran desert including varieties of cacti, succulents, shrubs, herbaceous wild flowers and deciduous drought tolerant trees.

A brief description of the institution's approach to hydrology and water use:

ASU is transitioning to smart irrigation controllers to manage water use.

A brief description of the institution's approach to landscape materials management and waste minimization:

Arizona State University is developing a university-wide composting program that includes food waste and green waste. The University purchases the resulting compost for use on campus landscapes to reduce the need for artificial fertilizers. A similar program exists on the Polytechnic campus. The amount of landscaping waste generated on the Downtown Phoenix Campus is negligible.

More information:

A brief description of the institution's approach to energy-efficient landscape design:

Arizona State University installed a PowerParasol solar PV array next to the Memorial Union building which provides shade for a series of study tables and a performance stage.

There are several shaded gardens for outdoor lunch areas and social gathering spaces.

ASU has replaced it's Palm Walk palm trees with date palms that not only provide more shade but also provide an edible landscape.

A brief description of other sustainable landscape management practices employed by the institution:

Arizona State University’s approach to sustainable landscape management focuses on using desert adapted plants and working to minimize turf use to community spaces. Centrally controlled irrigation systems are being installed across the university to ensure the optimal amount of water is used. Organic fertilizers (compost, compost tea, hydrolyzed fish solution, and other organic fertilizers) are used in order to minimize conventional fertilizers.

ASU has also integrated edible plants into its landscape as an engagement tool. Examples include dates, citrus, and herbs.

Finally, ASU works to reuse landscape elements and leftovers from construction (boulders, pavers, and misc. items) for use in the landscape.

Website URL where information about the institution’s sustainable landscape management program is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
Data source(s) and notes about the submission:

Campus areas breakdown methodology available in the attached spreadsheet. Most values provided by ASU Asset Management (some measurements taken using Google Earth. Landscape practices provided by ASU Grounds.

Campus areas breakdown methodology available in the attached spreadsheet. Most values provided by ASU Asset Management (some measurements taken using Google Earth. Landscape practices provided by ASU Grounds.

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution or simply email your inquiry to stars@aashe.org.