Making Centretown More Nut Tree Friendly
Suggestions below made by San Mateo County in California for their residents ( http://www.recycleworks.org/greenbuilding/sus_impervioussurfaces.html ). Good advice for us in Ottawa, too. However, the references which now point to sources in California will be redirected to Canadian sources as we find them. Can you help? If you know of comparable sources in Canada, please let us know!
Reduce Impervious Surfaces Impervious surfaces include driveways, patios, and walkways. The more impervious surfaces on a site, the more run-off there is. The consequence of run-off is an increased speed of water flow, which cannot be absorbed into the ground as readily, increases erosion, and dumps an excessive amount of pollutants into one spot.
The goal, then, is to utilize surfaces that are "broken apart" and allow water to flow into the ground. In addition, in areas that freeze, this allows for the frozen ground to swell and then sink with the thaw, which eliminates cracks that form in wet laid patios, concrete and asphalt surfaces. Reducing impervious surfaces will help to minimize water velocity and run-off. It will aid the reduction of pollutants and sediment deposits in waterways and reduce estuarial water temperatures.
Utilizing planting swales instead of berms.
Narrow the road width.
Parking lots can be greener by replacing unused parking spaces with planting beds. In addition to reducing the amount of impervious surface, it will decrease maintenance costs and create a more human-scaled environment.
Replace solid driveways with porous alternatives.
Porous paving or pervious pavement.
Use dry laid patios and walk ways instead of wet laid.
Interrupt the walkways.
A second alternative to using treated wood is lumber certificated sustainable by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). The Council utilizes region-specific forest-management standards to judge if a particular forest operations is in conformance with FSC standards. A certificate is issued, enabling the landowner to bring product to market as "certified wood," and to use the FSC trademark logo. This process is at the landowner's request.
A third option is plastic wood or products such as TREX, which is made from reclaimed plastics and woodwaste. Advantages of plastic wood include that it will not rot, does not need to be sealed, is resistant to moisture, bacteria growth and graffiti, and cleans up with soap and water. Guide to Plastic Lumber.
Use RubberSidewalks instead of concrete.
The rubber sidewalk gently bends when pushed from below by tree roots. It's also soft enough to cushion the landing of anyone unlucky enough to trip and fall on it. When the roots need trimming, the rubber panels can be popped out and then reused. In addition, rubber sidewalks come in a variety of colors. More information on RubberSidewalks.
Green retaining walls.