Will increased rainfall, more frequent and severe storms wash our sins away?
Mother nature has a way, a process for correcting and restoring the natural balance of resources in our landscape environment.
Consider the positive aspects of stormwater including flooding: recharging groundwater, hydrating and nourishing trees and plants, flushing contaminates such as gas, oil, pesticide residue, particulate deposits etc. from ground surfaces.
Another consideration is the effect this increased volume, flow, weight and velocity impacts infrastructure and landscape features.
In addition to overflowing ground water storage systems including but not limited to septics, dry-wells, french, curtain and perimeter drains, stormwater also often causes overflow discharge of untreated waste from water treatment facilities.
Many of our streams, brooks, creeks, ponds, lakes and waterways are contaminated by manmade point-source pollution as well as naturally occurring pollutants that are produced in our environment due to conditions resulting from changes in climate, topography and hydrology, as well as development of the landscape, displacing and altering surface and subsurface flow.
We can work together to significantly improve the ability of our naturally resilient landscape ecosystems to provide ecosystem services in terms of resource conservation and management. If not, we risk not doing enough, which will inevitably result in degrading of essential land, air and water quality which in turn will eventually lead to catastrophic failure of our ecosystems by under estimating damage to our natural resources.
What can we do to reduce the impact of climate change, mitigate greenhouse gases, reduce carbon emissions and create a healthier, more productive environment for human health and well being?
We can start at home. Analysis of flow paths and site conditions would suggest locations for ecologically valuable and more attractive landscape features. This can be as simple as planting a rain garden or a tree. What about a water garden or water feature to attract birds and clean the air? Any landscape can be ecologically improved to achieve not only carbon neutral but carbon positive!
We can improve our own human health by making our landscapes more attractive. It wouldn’t hurt to bring in more wild elements!
Are we not bored by our heavily manicured lawns and shrubs sheared into meatballs!
Everything is dependent and reliant upon the functionality of the soil and the plants. By increasing the biomass of planting including the root to shoot mass/ratio, we can improve the ability of each and every landscape to clean the air and water while sequestering carbon and contributing life giving oxygen to our atmosphere.
Start today to reconnect with nature and redesign your landscape for health and beauty!
Jay Archer, President