Thursday, May 18, 2017

Spraying Away

This week I was installing a pollinator garden at a local school with the help of volunteers -- mostly some awesome kids from that school. The small garden will not only support wildlife, but increase vegetable yields in nearby raised beds. But all around the school, against every wall, I saw this:


A hired crew sprayed Roundup -- we never discovered if it included a pre-emergent or what formulation it was -- killing weeds and grass within 2 feet of the building. Though the above image is not of the garden area, this spraying did happen there, so we moved the plants out from the wall in case the formulation they used is the kind that's in the soil for months. Still, we might lose plants. I seeded a short grass to act as a living green mulch, and who knows if anything will germinate.

But here's the thing. While the spraying was rumored to benefit mow crews so they don't scrape into the walls, it's now left a vacuum of vegetation, and nature abhors empty space. It wants to fill it in. At some point something will move in, and it might be less desirable than dandelions. Plus, this bare soil may also wash away, allowing water to collect near the foundation. And it looks ugly.

Hopefully, any future spraying can stay far, far away from the new pollinator garden. Even better, they simply won't spray anywhere since there are kids all over the place.

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