‘Scoop the Poop’ campaign aims to keep the environment and Stormwater clean
Scoop the Poop aims to educate the public on how dangerous pet waste is to the environment. Leaders are trying to encourage pet owners to always pick up after their furry friends.
According to city and county records, there are about 13,000 licensed dogs in the area. An average dog can produce 276 lbs. of waste every year. If owners don’t clean that up, the waste washes directly into our storm water system.
One gram of dog waste has 23 million E. coli bacteria, which will live for three years even after rain washes away waste into the Stormwater system, according to Scoop the Poop organizers.
by Adrian Higgins – Washington Post
Spring has been a long time coming this year. But the wait is over, and the next month will bring an especially vivid carnival as delayed blooms join those unfurling on schedule.
This floral parade may help distract us from a widespread practice that reaches its peak in March: the mutilation of crape myrtles, a deed that arborists label “crape murder.”
So why is it done? The short answer seems to be “because everyone else does it.” That includes landscaping crews who move through commercial and residential landscapes at this time of year, only to leave a forest of stubs.
The best option for a butchered tree is to cut it to the ground — actually, an inch or two above the soil line but no higher: No stubs, please. From the established root system, new shoots will return with vigor. After a couple of years, the tree can be pruned to leave a desired structure of five or so upright stems that leave an open center and pleasant silhouette.
Rain gardens are landscaped depressions that capture rain runoff. They are typically located down-slope from a roof, driveway or other impervious surface and are designed to absorb all standing water within 24-48 hours of a storm.
Rain gardens are one of the most effective ways to manage your stormwater and protect our local streams.
Mycore mediation – using fungi to clean pollutants – is being used to clean waterways, soil and in some areas, even radioactive waste. Here a US project is using locally grown mushrooms and coffee grounds to clean their local waterways.
The Ocean Blue Project, started by two local Corvallis residents – Richard Aterbury and Rosalie Bienek – begun using mushrooms to restore contaminated aquatic habitats in their area.
The project buy locally grown oyster mushroom spores that they grow in a coffee ground mix. Then they create a ‘bunker spawn’ which goes into the river. This consists of a burlap bag filled with wood chips and the inoculated oyster mushroom spawn. The bags are secured with bamboo sticks and placed on the river banks (see top photo). As the oyster mushrooms grow, they break down toxins in-situ, removing and neutralising the pollutants in the river (a form of bioremediation). Oyster mushrooms have been shown to reduce E. coli and break down hydrocarbons.
So far the project has been successful but it will take time to determine the full effects. Richard has hopes that one day metals will be able to be extracted from the mycelium which could then be used in computer chips and batteries – waste management at its best!
The Ocean Blue Project also plan to educate the community about unchecked industrial and agricultural runoff and alternative methods to pesticides and fertilsers.
To learn more, visit Ocean Blue Project’s website at http://www.oceanblueproject.org.
When: Saturday, March 14, 2015 from 1:00-2:30pm
Where: Booker T. Washington National Monument Auditorium, Route 122 in Westlake
Admission: Free (attendance limited to the first 80 people)
If you would like more information about the Blue Ridge Foothills and Lake Chapter of the Virginia Master Naturalists, please visit our website: http://www.brfal.blogspot.com