Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 61.40
Liaison Jennifer Bodine
Submission Date April 25, 2022

STARS v2.2

Weber State University
OP-9: Landscape Management

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.00 / 2.00 Drew Hodge
Water Conservation Specialist
Facilities Management
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Total campus area:
512.40 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 0.62 Acres
Area managed in accordance with an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program that uses selected chemicals only when needed 482 Acres
Area managed using conventional, chemical-based landscape management practices 0 Acres
Total area of managed grounds 482.62 Acres

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

Weber State University's total campus area is larger than its managed ground because WSU has property that is not actively managed. The Ogden campus is located on a mountainside where the land transitions to wild land that is surrounded by public land. WSU does not landscape it in any way. The land does have existing hiking and biking trails that are maintained.

Percentage of grounds managed organically:

A brief description of the organic landscape management program:

In 2021 WSU created a new Integrated pest management master plan that outlines how to approach testing out areas organically, and when a successful path is working, WSU will expand the organic areas annually. Within these test areas no inorganic fertilizers, chemical pesticides, fungicides and herbicides are applied.

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:

In 2008, Weber State University created an IPM coordinator position in the Landscaping Department to create and oversee an Integrated Pest Management program for the University.

The first step taken by the IPM coordinator was the creation of a pesticide application log to help WSU track the use and cost of pesticides each year. After employees became accustomed to this process, the IPM coordinator introduced and implemented the following four-tiered approach to Integrated Pest Management:

1- Set Action Thresholds

An action threshold is a percentage of pests to be tolerated in a particular area without taking any action to control them. The idea is that we cannot kill one hundred percent of the pests in nature so we allow a certain percentage to exist unchecked

The IPM coordinator set WSU's action thresholds as follows: ten percent for trees and shrubs, five percent for flower beds and turf, and one percent for extremely high visibility and marketing areas.

2- Monitor for pests

Not every bug or weed in a landscape needs to be controlled as many are completely harmless to plants and people. Some such as lady bugs are actually beneficial to a plant.
Through monitoring, WSU first correctly identifies a potential pest before it becomes a problem and then takes appropriate action. This decreases the amount of pesticides WSU has to use which saves money and reduces harmful environmental impacts.

To aid in this process the IPM coordinator created an IPM Landscape Monitoring Field Data Sheet and trained staff on how to use it effectively.

3- Preventive cultural practices

WSU's Landscape Department believes that the best defense is a good offense, so their primary focus is on preventing a pest from ever getting out of control. Prevention is accomplished by first trying to select varieties of plants that are best for our growing conditions and the location of the planting and then great care is taken in the planting of that plant. WSU's Landscaping Department also tries to select pest resistant cultivars. These measures, along with proper sanitation of the plant sight, (no dead leaves and excessive weeds) help to maintain healthy plants. After all a stressed plant is a vulnerable plant.

4- Control.

If a pest exceeds acceptable levels, the first control method to be used is mechanical control. This can be as simple as picking the bugs off of an infested plant, putting up insect barriers, using traps, or even vacuuming the plant.

If the infestation persists WSU then employs biological controls. These include predatory insects, naturally derived chemicals, microorganisms such as bt, or other entomopathogenic organisms.

If all these steps fail to control the outbreak, then WSU uses an application of non-restricted chemicals. Weber State does not use restricted chemical pesticides unless extraordinary circumstance dictate it. Using restricted chemicals requires the approval of the IPM coordinator and the Landscape Department manager.

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

WSU uses low water, and indigenous plants in existing landscaping, as well as in new construction, and renovations. WSU has a large amount of existing native landscape, primarily scrub oak, on the east side of campus that is located on the Wasatch Mountain range and is surrounded by public lands. This area is not actively managed and provides habitat for wildlife and public hiking and biking trails.

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

WSU uses secondary (untreated) water for 95% of all irrigation. The University utilizes a retention pond that collects storm water from all of campus, as well as from the surrounding neighborhoods. By reducing the amount of storm water released to the city, or to existing streams, WSU is helping to maintain the integrity of the natural hydrology of not just the University's campus, but the Ogden valley as well.

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

WSU currently collects all of its green waste and has it hauled to Wasatch Integrated Waste Management District for composting. WSU then purchases the finished compost product back from Wasatch Integrated.

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

Weber State University installed infrastructure to allow for the majority of secondary water use to be gravity fed. Head pressure from WSU's secondary line fills a reservoir above campus and then the campus is gravity fed from the reservoir. This approach saves roughly 200,000 kwh of energy a year.

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

WSU uses Blue Heat ice melt on the university grounds. Blue Heat is biodegradable, and is locally produced in Clearfield Utah.

Website URL where information about the institution’s sustainable landscape management program is available:

Additional documentation to support the submission:

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.