Overall Rating Gold - expired
Overall Score 68.35
Liaison Alexis Reyes
Submission Date Oct. 29, 2015
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

Pomona College
OP-10: Landscape Management

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.80 / 2.00 Robin Xu
SIO Staff
Sustainability Integration Office
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Figures required to calculate the total area of managed grounds::
Total campus area 76.89 Hectares
Footprint of the institution's buildings 17 Hectares
Area of undeveloped land, excluding any protected areas Hectares

Area of managed grounds that is::
Managed in accordance with an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Plan Hectares
Managed in accordance with a sustainable landscape management program that includes an IPM plan and otherwise meets the criteria outlined 23.47 Hectares
Managed organically, third party certified and/or protected 36.42 Hectares

A copy of the IPM plan:
The IPM plan :

Pomona's Sustainable Operations and Maintenance Standards state that outdoor pests shall be managed in a way that protects the surrounding environment and human health. To minimize use of chemicals and prevent pests from becoming a threat, Grounds must inspect and monitor outdoor facilities, sanitize and manage pest attractants, engage in structural maintenance, and evaluate the need for pest control. If the need for chemical controls is established, Grounds can only use substances in targeted locations on targeted species. All substances must meet San Francisco's Tier 3 hazard criteria for a least toxic pesticide, and if cleaning products are used, they must be in accordance with the College's Green Cleaning Standards. Pesticides are acceptable only if they are used in self-contained baits and placed in inaccessible locations. Indoor management of pests follows similar procedures. The EPA IPM guidelines are equivalent, as Pomona's Standards require evaluation, targeted application, prevention, and guidelines for the selection and application of pest control substances.

A brief summary of the institution’s approach to sustainable landscape management:

Pomona College has committed to sustainability. What might this mean for landscape and open space design? First, designers must consider sustainability both in terms of renovation projects as well as new construction. Sustainability, as suggested above, is a critical issue that must become an integral part of the design process.

Sustainable landscape design may assess basic and practical issues, which include evaluating the use or application of fertilizers, pesticides and herbicides; reducing or eliminating portions of planted areas to conserve water; use of the most efficient irrigation systems; and establishing composting programs for organic wastes. But a complete and workable definition of sustainability for Pomona College must also address
what has been described as “aesthetic sustainability.” This includes visual appeal and harmony, combined with ecological integrity, issues of human well-being, and place identity.

Considerations of aesthetic sustainability at Pomona College include recognition that the value of historic, mature landscapes such as those of Marston Quadrangle must be balanced with desires to solve current dilemmas such as reduction of water use. There must also be a recognition that newer is not necessarily better, and that the most sustainable landscape may be the one that already exists. This is quite clear in the more
undisturbed regions of the Wash, but is equally true of the edges of Marston Quadrangle.
Composed of traditionally high water use plant material such as coast redwood and camellias, the maturity of this landscape causes it to be classified as a relatively low water use zone.

Truly sustainable landscape design balances a variety of resources, including water, stormwater runoff, historic value, and aesthetic character. A sustainable landscape cannot conserve one resource, while ignoring others. Water conservation, for instance, is a critical issue for Southern California. However, water use reduction should not occur at the expense of the beautiful and usable spaces that make Pomona the “College in a
Garden.” We must preserve historical landscape character and work toward ecological sustainability at the same time. The positive environmental effects of landscapes, including oxygen production, solar control, heat mitigation, and stormwater runoff
control and filtration must be maintained and maximized.

In addition, sustainability efforts at Pomona College should always be an educational process for the campus community and for visitors. Wherever appropriate, landscape design should incorporate interpretive graphics describing sustainability efforts.

When considering issues of sustainability in designing projects at Pomona College, site specificity and context must be at the forefront of design decisions. Sustainability must coexist with existing, mature, and historic open spaces.

Whether designing new spaces or renovating older ones, understanding maintenance issues should be considered an integral part of the design process. The project designer must proactively engage the college’s Office of Facilities and Campus Services, which includes the Grounds, Maintenance, Planning, and Sustainability Departments, from the earliest phases of design.

This will provide the campus staff with the opportunity to share with the designer their special requirements and institutional knowledge as well as standards specific to Pomona College. Issues such as material selection, initial planning densities, equipment limitations, etc., can be shared and mutually agreed upon early in the design process. At the same time, the design intent and long-range aesthetic expectations can be agreed upon and later codified for use by maintenance staff in the future.

The Office of Facilities and Campus Services is the source for all campus standards with regard to irrigation, site lighting, and site furnishings and is an invaluable resource for points of communication with other campus departments and organizations.

Once the project is complete, it shall be the responsibility of the project designer to provide written guidelines for specific maintenance requirements and expectations as discussed above.

A brief description of how the institution protects and uses existing vegetation, uses native and ecologically appropriate plants, and controls and manages invasive species:

The Pomona College Open Space and Landscape Guidelines, approved in May 2010, identify "the use of California native plants and their cultivars whenever appropriate" as a major design issue for sustainability in the College landscape. The College has been systematically increasing the variety and extent of drought-tolerant and native vegetation throughout the campus. The campus also contains a dedicated natural preserve known as "the Wash" with a variety of species of native flora.

A brief description of the institution’s landscape materials management and waste minimization policies and practices:

All green waste from campus operations is either composted on-site or picked up by the City of Claremont, where it is composted and used as mulch.

A brief description of the institution’s organic soils management practices:

Pomona College no longer purchases or uses synthetic fertilizers on our grounds. All fertilizers used on campus are organic. Additionally, 90 acres of the Pomona College campus are managed completely organically, meaning we do not use chemical pesticides or herbicides. This area includes the Wash (natural non-irrigated native landscape dominated by native oak trees), the Pomona College Organic Farm, and Trails End Ranch (natural chaparral and oak woodland riparian located in the Claremont foothills).

+ Date Revised: Jan. 7, 2016

A brief description of the institution’s use of environmentally preferable materials in landscaping and grounds management:

Porous/ permeable substances are used in hardscape planning.

A brief description of how the institution restores and/or maintains the integrity of the natural hydrology of the campus:

The campus implements stormwater management techniques which include bioswales, retention ponds, CHCments, and stormwater diversion infrastructure.

A brief description of how the institution reduces the environmental impacts of snow and ice removal (if applicable):


A brief description of any certified and/or protected areas:

In 1905 The Wash, a 40 acre run-off area for floods from the nearby mountains, was purchased and protected from development. This property is immediately adjacent to campus and houses the Pomona Organic Farm and some athletic fields on the periphery. In 2011, Trails End Ranch was purchased, including more than 50 acres of almost pristine chaparral, for a new field station and to preserve an important piece of natural landscape from future development. The property is 3.9 miles from campus and adjacent to natural lands owned by the County of Los Angeles and the Claremont Wilderness Park.

Is the institution recognized by the Arbor Day Foundation's Tree Campus USA program (if applicable)?:

The website URL where information about the institution’s sustainable landscape management programs and practices is available:

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 and complete the Data Inquiry Form.