Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 74.42
Liaison Dave Cano
Submission Date Feb. 1, 2018
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Western University
OP-9: Landscape Management

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 0.98 / 2.00 Rob Pigeon
Sustainability Coordinator
Facilities Management
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Total campus area (i.e. the total amount of land within the institutional boundary):
193.60 Hectares

Figures required to calculate the total area of managed grounds:
Area (double-counting is not allowed)
Area managed in accordance with an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program that uses a four-tiered approach 189.29 Hectares
Area managed in accordance with an organic land care standard or sustainable landscape management program that has eliminated the use of inorganic fertilizers and chemical pesticides, fungicides and herbicides in favor of ecologically preferable materials 0 Hectares
Area managed using conventional landscape management practices (which may include some IPM principles or techniques) 4.31 Hectares
Total area of managed grounds 193.60 Hectares

A brief description of any land excluded from the area of managed grounds (e.g. the footprint of buildings and impervious surfaces, experimental agricultural land, areas that are not regularly managed or maintained):
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Percentage of grounds managed in accordance with an IPM program:
97.77

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

An Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Plan has been in place at Western since 1992. Harmful fungicide and pesticides are not used on campus and have not been used for more than a decade. As of April 30, 2009, a new piece of legislation put forth by Western has forbidden the University from spraying unless it is a matter of high importance. The same year, Western Grounds phased out herbicides for weed control on hard surfaces (between sidewalk slabs). Currently, Western relies on natural remedies in a conversion to all environmental products.

In addition, all gardens around campus are monitored under an IPM. Gardens that needed to be sprayed every 7 to 10 days have been removed. Western also plants trees that are thought not to cause problems. Specifically, Western has been buying black spot tolerant trees while making sure that they are being planted correctly, trimmed, and established properly so that little or no maintenance is needed.

Another practice started by Western to prevent pests includes the removal of any plants which are susceptible to infestations. Any tree or shrub that is being considered for planting needs to meet the following criteria:
- Have a long life expectancy
- Come from a disease-free stock
- Insect and disease resistant
- Not an alternative host to a secondary disease


Percentage of grounds managed in accordance with an organic program:
0

A brief description of the organic land standard or landscape management program that has eliminated the use of inorganic fertilizers and chemical pesticides, fungicides and herbicides in favor of ecologically preferable materials:

Western University follows a strict Integrated Pest Management Plan, and uses native and ecologically appropriately plants, and controls for invasive species. Western is committed to landscaping with environmentally preferred materials, and reuses as many materials as possible in order to minimize waste. Maintaining and enhancing natural nutrient and water cycles are of high priority on campus, such as proper soil aeration and minimal irrigation. Due to harsh winters in London, ON, Western uses a magnesium chloride additive to allow salt to work at extremely cold temperatures.


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

Landscape planning at Western incorporated preservation of the grounds and development of a Landscape Plan. This Plan includes the allocation of lands for the Arboretum, and enhancement of courtyards and other spaces while trying to use species native to Southwestern Ontario whenever considering new planting/landscaping. Furthermore, in the development of plans for new facilities, the preservation of trees is a critical part of the planning. When it is necessary to remove trees, these are to be replaced in numbers equal to or greater than the trees being removed (University of Western Ontario – Master Plan).


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

Western restores and maintains the natural hydrology of the campus by minimizing and eliminating the use of potable water for irrigation, as well as the use of native, drought-tolerant plant species. Many flower beds throughout campus are designed to be drought tolerant, and do not require irrigation throughout the growing season. Two artificial turf fields have recently replaced grass sport fields on Huron Drive, across from the Labatt Health Sciences Building, which require no irrigation and have well-equipped drainage systems. Permeable, highly reflective tiles and native drought-tolerant landscaping exist at Claudette McKay Lassonde Pavilion's courtyard and the building’s perimeter. As a result, no permanent irrigation is required.


A brief description of the institution's approach to materials management and waste minimization (e.g. composting and/or mulching on-site waste):

Western recycles and reuses 100% of the leaves on campus. Leaves on the forest edge are blown back into the wooded lots and leaves that are on the lawn and flower beds are collected and transferred to the university's leaf composting area on campus. Other materials, such as grass clippings, plant material, soil and turf from landscape installations are also added to the mix.


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

Western restores and maintains the natural hydrology of the campus by minimizing and eliminating the use of potable water for irrigation, as well as the use of native, drought-tolerant plant species. Many flower beds throughout campus are designed to be drought tolerant, and do not require irrigation throughout the growing season. Two artificial turf fields have recently replaced grass sport fields on Huron Drive, across from the Labatt Health Sciences Building, which require no irrigation and have well-equipped drainage systems. Permeable, highly reflective tiles and native drought-tolerant landscaping exist at Claudette McKay Lassonde Pavilion's courtyard and the building’s perimeter. As a result, no permanent irrigation is required. Western recycles and reuses 100% of the leaves on campus. Leaves on the forest edge are blown back into the wooded lots and leaves that are on the lawn and flower beds are collected and transferred to the university's leaf composting area on campus. Other materials, such as grass clippings, plant material, soil and turf from landscape installations are also added to the mix.


A brief description of other sustainable landscape management practices employed by the institution (e.g. use of environmentally preferable landscaping materials, initiatives to reduce the impacts of ice and snow removal, wildfire prevention):

The salt used on the Western campus is treated with a magnesium chloride additive. The greatest benefit is that the salt continues to work in extremely cold temperatures. Normally, once the temperature decreases to minus six degrees Celsius or lower, most road salts become less effective and some areas may need to be salted several times to compensate. On the other hand, magnesium chloride-treated salt is effective up to minus 20 degrees Celsius, making a single pass often enough.

In addition, less harmful formulation containing potassium acetate and corrosion inhibitors (green and blue coloured material) are being used in and around campus. The colour is a product feature to let workers identify areas that have already been treated, eliminating the tendency to over-apply.

Western staff are trained on the 'Smart About Salt' Program, which teaches staff how to sparingly use salt, while still maintaining a safe campus. This has helped to significantly reduce the tonnage of salt being used on campus each winter.


The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
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