Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 53.00
Liaison Kathy Johnson
Submission Date April 21, 2020

STARS v2.2

Black Hills State University
OP-9: Landscape Management

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 0.85 / 2.00 Eric Hanson
Grounds Crew leader
Facilities Services
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Total campus area:
123 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 17 Acres
Area managed in accordance with an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program that uses selected chemicals only when needed 70 Acres
Area managed using conventional, chemical-based landscape management practices 36 Acres
Total area of managed grounds 123 Acres

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

There is a small test plot area (1.5 acres) that receives no management, no mowing, watering, weed spraying, fertilizing etc. Monitoring the native flora and fauna to see what comes back after years of maintenance.


Percentage of grounds managed organically:
13.82

A brief description of the organic landscape management program:

Organic fertilizer is used where needed, Weeds are not sprayed with inorganic, chemical based product, monitoring is our best defense against pests, i.e. fungus, bugs, weeds etc. There are a certain amount of pests that are acceptable, when they reach a threshold that is not acceptable, measures are taken and when chemical based products are needed they are used sparingly and focused directly at the intended pest.


Percentage of grounds managed in accordance with an IPM program:
56.91

A copy of the IPM plan or program:
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A brief description of the IPM program:

The IPM program operates on the principle of ALARA. As Low As Reasonably Acceptable. If a pest is noted, be it bug, virus, fungus, animal, weeds, we decide at what level of infestation is acceptable. When that level reaches beyond the threshold of acceptability, measures are taken to keep them in check. The mitigation is typically focused directly at the pest and no “blanket” practices are used.


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

BHSU believes that plants offer a calming effect on it’s students, faculty and staff, we have therefore contributed to our canopy cover by planting 1,000 trees in the last 5 years, we’ve added several planting beds, hanging baskets and pots with annual flowers for a large impact of color throughout the growing season. We log over 1500 hours per year watering and maintenance of our plants.


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

Irrigation for grounds purposes uses the majority of water on campus. We’ve committed to reduce our water use by 15% by 2030 according to our Sustainability Master Plan. We have reduced consumption of water for grounds by 45% in the last two years. We have installed infrastructure to use non-potable irrigation ditch water from a natural creek rather than municipal well water for a portion of our irrigation system. We installed 440 square feet of pervious surface sidewalk to reduce runoff from that surface. Detention ponds are utilized near large parking lots to capture storm water prior to becoming run-off.


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

All prunings and some of our recyclable shredded paper are added to a compost pile that returns to planting beds, thereby reducing the need for fertilizer or other inorganic additives. Many branches from trees are being chipped and reused as mulch.


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

Trees are planted to utilize the shade cast onto buildings to take advantage of their reduction in heating and cooling costs.


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

The grounds crew utilizes smaller carts to traverse campus rather than less fuel efficient full-size pickups whenever possible.


Website URL where information about the institution’s sustainable landscape management program is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
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