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June is Garden Tour Month

On June 19, we will be visiting five homes starting at 5 p.m.and spending approximately one half hour at each home with time allowed for driving to the next garden. There will be light refreshments and a glass of wine/beer at the last venue. The garden party will be held at a home with an outdoor kitchen, concrete around the pool and umbrella covering. The June weather this summer has hindered many gardeners from getting plants in the ground, and mulch applied. And our poor farmers are so far behind! Regardless, our kind Westlake neighbors have opened their spaces to our club. If you are unable to tour the gardens, please join us for the garden party at 7 p.m.  

May Meeting: Green Corps Presentation at the CBG

It was a beautiful spring day when the Westlake Garden met at the Cleveland Botanical Garden. The meeting began at 11:30 a.m. For those who arrived early, it was a great time to take a short walk through the outdoor gardens. Although most of the tulips were finished blooming, there were daffodils and many other spring blooms to be enjoyed, including all the spring foliage. Following a short business meeting, a presentation was put on by Kelly Barrett, the director of Green Corps. Green Corps is an educational program in urban gardening for high school age students. To quote from their brochure, “. . . teens work at urban farms in Cleveland, learning job, leadership and life skills . . .”. Vacant lots are converted into urban farms producing fruits, vegetables and flowers which are later sold at weekly farm stands benefitting the local community. According to Ms. Barrett, many of the students who complete the four year program go on to higher learning and successful careers and most likely become gardeners for life. Kevin Brandstetter

April Program: Westlake Watershed Group

Wesley M. Davis, Engineer and head of the City of Westlake’s Watershed Group, addressed the WGC at its April 17 meeting.  Wes first reviewed past initiatives, the Federal Water Pollution Control Act of 1948 and the Clean Water Act of 1972.  In 2003 the City initiated Stream Restoration Projects, beginning with a Board of Health study that determine the water in our creeks and streams was badly contaminated.  The City has six major creeks/watersheds (Cahoon, Porter, Schwartz, Sperry, Wischmeyer and Wolf) that flow into Lake Erie.  These creeks and their tributaries comprise over 100 miles of waterways that are fed by 150 miles of storm sewers.  They collect water run-off from parking lots, roadways, buildings and landscape areas.  During urbanization, riparian buffers have been removed allowing contaminants to flow freely into our streams.  Preventing debris, fertilizers, oils and chemicals from contaminating storm water and eventually reaching the lake is the goal of the City and the Watershed Group.

 

Wetland projects in the Southbridge Circle and Columbia Creek areas have been completed.  The Dover Ditch project started in 2017 created 20 acres of wetland preserve at Crocker and Center Ridge Roads.  This project will reduce flooding in the Cahoon Creek Watershed.   Wes showed us amazing slides of the “before” and “after” of this project.  Over 100,000 cu. yds. of soil and debris were hauled off this site.  The stream channel has been re‑established, three settling ponds have been added, and trees and other native flora added.  A walking path and viewing platform is available for visitors.

 

The City’s Engineering Department in conjunction with the Watershed Group also promotes sustainability by promoting the use of rain barrels, organic fertilizers, other GoGreen ideas, and by sponsoring an annual Rain and Garden Show held at Crocker Park, at which our members participate.  An ongoing project in conjunction with the Cuyahoga Soil & Water Conservation District, is reviewing for compliance all detention basins in the City, both public and privately owned, numbering over 350.  Grants have been applied for the Point West and Woodpath upcoming projects.

 

In sum, Wes’ presentation was very informative, and we are proud of the City of Westlake’s efforts to clean and restore our waterways.

 

 

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