Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 68.21
Liaison Jeremy King
Submission Date Sept. 19, 2022

STARS v2.2

Denison University
OP-9: Landscape Management

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.55 / 2.00 Jeremy King
Campus Sustainability Coordinator
Office of the President
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Total campus area:
850 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 350 Acres
Area managed in accordance with an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program that uses selected chemicals only when needed 200 Acres
Area managed using conventional, chemical-based landscape management practices 30 Acres
Total area of managed grounds 580 Acres

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

Excluded from managed grounds are building footprints, roads and sidewalks (though we do use environmentally-friendly salts in the winter), and wooded areas throughout campus that we do not regularly maintain or manage.

Percentage of grounds managed organically:

A brief description of the organic landscape management program:

Denison 350-acre biological reserve is maintained using organic principles to ensure minimal impact on organisms and the landscape.

Denison's Biological Reserve was established by the Board of Trustees in 1966 through the efforts of Professor Robert Alrutz, who served as director until his retirement in 1990. The Reserve encompasses 350 acres in three contiguous sections that are within easy walking distance of campus. Approximately 75% of the acreage is beech-maple/mixed mesophytic forest interspersed with old orchards and former plantations of pine, spruce, sugar maple and yellow poplar. Late successional habitats are characteristic of those disturbed by grazing over 50 years ago. In the Alrutz Section, three former agricultural fields are maintained in various stages of succession by seasonal mowing. Clay Run, along with four ponds and seven natural springs provide habitat for aquatic organisms. The Reserve provides refuge for numerous amphibians, turtles, snakes, bats, rodents, flying squirrels, white-tailed deer, red fox, and over one hundred species of birds.

The purpose of the Reserve is to enhance the education of students in Biology and the Environmental Sciences through their courses, independent research and casual visitation to the Reserve. This is accomplished by providing opportunities for field studies of native Ohio flora and fauna as well as discrete biological communities that are maintained in as intact a condition as is possible given the land use history of the Reserve and the resources of DU. Consequently, one of the general goals of the Reserve is to maximize the number of representative habitats and species that the area can support.

Students taking Introduction to the Science of Biology, and Animal Behavior frequently meet their labs at the Bio Reserve to conduct field experiments. Other courses, such as Plant Ecology and Entomology, have used the Reserve as a base of operations for the entire semester. Students in Environmental Studies and Geology also utilize the Reserve as a resource to learn about field techniques, land management.

The Polly Anderson Field Station, erected in 1995, houses a large laboratory for class meetings as well as research space for students and faculty. Astronomy students use the telescope mount at the station for night viewing. Special public programs and field workshops for high school students also meet at the Station. The building was designed as a model of energy efficiency and is heated in winter by passive solar radiation. The Station is located in the Alrutz Section at the west entrance to the Reserve on Rt. 661, a quarter mile north of campus.

The Bio Reserve also serves as a site for student research projects during summers as well as the school year. Since 1992, over 15 undergraduate research projects have been conducted at the Reserve with 13 resulting in honors theses and 7 in presentations at national meetings. In 1996, six Biology and Environmental Studies majors comprised the first Biodiversity Assessment Team (BAT) and began the first of several inventories and long-term studies of biodiversity at the Bio Reserve. In subsequent years, numerous students and their faculty advisors have continued to study and document the biodiversity of the Reserve as well as other parks and preserves nearby. Currently, species lists are available for the trees, amphibians, birds, butterflies and dragonflies of the Bio Reserve and long-term monitoring programs have been established for frogs, butterflies and dragonflies.

The Reserve also provides a haven for members of the Denison and Granville communities who enjoy walking in natural surroundings. The Reserve is open to the public from dawn to dusk every day. A well-marked trail system has been established that allows the visitor to explore a variety of habitats and terrain. Hunting, firearms, campfires, camping, horseback riding and disturbance of natural features are prohibited. Trail bikes are permitted on certain trails during the summer and fall.

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:

Denison University Grounds Integrated Pest Management Statement

Integrated Pest Management (IPM) on school property is a long-term approach to maintaining healthy landscapes that minimizes risks to people and the environment. Denison University will use site assessment, monitoring, and pest prevention in combination with a variety of pest management tactics to keep pests within acceptable limits. Instead of routine chemical applications, cultural, mechanical, physical, and biological controls will be employed with selective use of low impact pesticides, when needed. Educational strategies are used to enhance pest prevention, and to build support for the IPM program.

Campus IPM Goals:

The Roles: Responsibilities and training of the Denison University grounds maintenance team regarding IPM for the campus grounds will be clearly defined and shared with the campus sustainability committee to support the mission and function of the campus landscape objectives.
Pest identification: Pests are defined as any organism causing a measurable deterioration in the aesthetic or functional value to the campus landscape. The Grounds Department will be monitoring types of pests and thresholds, and will take the appropriate recommended action(s). All recordkeeping will be properly completed and filed at the Physical Plant office.
Pest Prevention and Control to Maintain a Healthy Environment: A proactive approach of non-chemical controls will be routinely practiced as a first attempt/approach to reduce pest problems; however, if a pests are causing health, safety or costly crop damage, then a low impact pesticide will be used in the early morning hours with minimum restrictions for the area reentry to make every effort minimize exposure to students, faculty, and staff.
Keep the Campus Community Informed: IPM records will be maintained and made available for the campus community to review. There will also be an annual notice of the IPM program status and established procedures for non-pesticide use. We have adopted notification procedures for emergency situations that includes information regarding proactive applications of low-impact pesticides (likely emailed). We have also established posting procedures for all outdoor areas that are treated with low -risk pesticides and time of reentry into the area. The University’s IPM plan will be evaluated and revised annually, as needed, in conjunction with the sustainability committee.
Campus IPM Coordinator

Role: The IPM Coordinator (Grounds and Landscape Manager) is the individual within the facility who is in charge of pest control activities for all facets of the campus grounds. This individual has the authority and backing of the college administration or management. The IPM Coordinator has the primary responsibility for ensuring the IPM plan is carried out, and is the primary contact for the campus community and public. Ultimately, this person is directly responsible for the integration of all IPM activities and will be responsible for the following:

Implement the campus IPM Policy and Plan.
Maintain information about the IPM Policy and Plan.
Maintain information about pesticide applications on campus property including records obtained from the pesticide applicator, Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) when available for pesticides used, and labels for all pesticide products used.
Maintain records of any pest monitoring and non-pesticide controls implemented.
Provide access to the above information for public review.
Respond to inquiries and providing information to students, staff, and parents or faculty regarding IPM.
Provide training in IPM practices to the grounds maintenance staff as described in the individual ‘Roles, Responsibilities, and Training’ sections of the campus IPM Plan.
Ensure that all persons conducting pesticide applications have all Ohio -required training, certification, and licensing. This person will also ensure that they follow the campus IPM Policy and Plan.
Sequence of IPM Protocol

Cultural control: Examples: improve sanitation; reducing clutter; people change habits like leaving food in the classroom; maintain plant health by taking care of the habits and conditions; fertilization, plant selection (right plant/right place), and sanitation to exclude problematic pests and weeds.
Physical control: Examples: pest exclusion; removing pest access to the school building by sealing openings with caulk and copper mesh; repairing leaks and screens; removing pests by hand.
Mechanical control: Examples: insect monitors, light traps, rodent traps; till soil prior to planting to disrupt pest life cycles.
Biological control - use of pest’s natural enemies: Examples: introduce beneficial insects or bacteria to the environment or, if they already exist, provide them with the necessary food and shelter; and avoid using broad-spectrum chemicals that will inadvertently kill beneficial.
Least hazardous chemical controls with preference given to School IPM Act-defined ‘low impact pesticides.’
IPM Procedures:

Coordinate pre- and post-notification for students, staff and faculty of low- impact pesticide applications, in accordance with the college notification procedures.
Obtain and maintain all pesticide application records for a minimum of three years.
Compile all ‘Pest Problem Report’ forms received in ‘IPM Pest Activity Monitoring and Control Log’ (see Appendix for sample log). Document actions taken to remedy pest problems in the log.
Maintain a prioritized list of pest management issues (including key pests, and needed landscape improvements and substandard sanitation practices).
Evaluate efficacy of IPM practices on campus property on a monthly basis, at a minimum.
Set up and moderate the annual evaluation of the campus IPM plan and make needed revisions, accordingly.
Pesticide Applications

Pesticides will be selected when other control methods are not effective or practical in resolving a pest problem. Pesticides will not be used on campus property unless the pest has been identified and its presence verified. It is neither possible, nor desirable, to completely exterminate every pest and potential pest from every population on the campus grounds property.

The college IPM Coordinator will establish injury (also known as tolerance or threshold) levels and action thresholds for each individual pest species before applying any chemical treatment. Action thresholds for pesticide treatment are triggered if all other IPM tactics have not been able to control pest populations to an acceptable level. Appropriate injury levels will be set, and may take into consideration economic losses.

A low-impact pesticide is a pesticide that is considered to have relatively minimal risk as compared to pesticides in general. For more information on low-impact pesticides please click on the following link from Rutgers University: http://archive.lib.msu.edu/tic/updat/article/2011sum16.pdf

Posting of Signs:

Placement: Prominent in/adjacent and at entrance to treatment area
Time posted 72 hours prior to 72 hours after treatment.
Size: At least 8.5" by 11".
Content of Notification and Signs:

Common name of pesticide
EPA registration number
Location description, date, and time of application three dates for outdoor applications, in case of cancellation
Reasons for the application


If there is application of a low-impact pesticide on the campus property, it will be made so that adequate settling or drying occurs in advance of when students, faculty and staff will be present.


At least annually, the Sustainability Committee and the Grounds and Landscape Manger will review of all records in the IPM log binder. Program evaluation involves reviewing and monitoring data, actions taken, treatment impacts and effectiveness, and any other relevant observations. These records will provide information on previous and current pest populations and which strategies were applied. Comparing data will clearly indicate which pest management strategies were most effective for the amount of time and money spent. IPM practices and procedures will be modified, if necessary, based on past experience, results, and gained knowledge. The criteria of the evaluation are listed below:

Adequacy of pest control
Areas of concern
Sanitation issues
New less toxic pest control tactics
Adequate support by all members of the community
Adequacy of thresholds
Revise integrated pest management priorities

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

Denison’s campus grounds are often used as a teaching lab, thus the diversity of native species is important. A desired native species list does exist and is used for most plantings. When necessary to satisfy needs based on site orientation, drainage, soil condition, serviceability and use - non-native and cultivars may be planted instead of native species. Known "undesirable" and/or invasive species are not considered in planting plans.

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

The majority of campus is located on top of a hill as such, Denison maintains a number of bioswales and storm water retention areas across campus that help to reduce erosion and sedimentation in local streams and rivers.

Nearly all hillsides are either forested or designated as no-mow areas to further protect the natural hydrology and permit more water to recharge groundwater aquifers.

Building projects, roads, and sidewalks are intentionally designed to limit disturbances to natural drainage areas and natural water features (springs, streams, etc.).

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

Denison composts and mulches 100% of its waste generated from grounds keeping activities. Grass clippings are typically mulched as part of the mowing process or are left on mowed areas.

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

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

Denison uses mechanical means of snow removal whenever possible and limits its use of chemicals. When chemicals are used, Denison uses a product called Safe Step which is recognized as an industry leader in eco-friendly snow & ice removal.

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:

Denison's main campus including buildings and sports fields/courts is 240 acres.

Denison has a 350 acre biological reserve

Denison has 150 acres of agricultural land

Denison now owns a 148 acre golf course that is not adjacent to campus and has not been included in any of the calculations above.

Denison has 26 acres of rentals and other commercial property that also have not been included in any of the calculations above.

Denison's main campus including buildings and sports fields/courts is 240 acres.

Denison has a 350 acre biological reserve

Denison has 150 acres of agricultural land

Denison now owns a 148 acre golf course that is not adjacent to campus and has not been included in any of the calculations above.

Denison has 26 acres of rentals and other commercial property that also have not been included in any of the calculations above.

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.