Friday, May 31, 2013

Healthy Cities Need Healthy Stormwater Ponds - Urban Green, Habitat and Herbicides

Feels like I am stuck in the movie, Groundhog Day starring Bill Murry.  You know, the one where he wakes up in the same room to the same song and everything repeats itself!

Same way with our local governments spraying herbicides into those otherwise healthy stormwater ponds.
Stormwater habitat destroyed with aquatic herbicides

For years we've discussed the concept of 'nutrients in, nutrients out' here in this blog and in other forumsSimply put, once plants take up and sequester nitrogen, phosphorous and heavy metals they should be harvested out of the stormwater pond and composted, rather than conveniently killed with herbicides and left to decompose in the pond, releasing all the once removed nutrients and toxins right back into the water once more.

Native plant species, Typha sp. killed and left to return sequestered nutrients and toxins back into the water
The concept is so simple I really do not understand why most of our local governments still want to apply herbicides to stormwater ponds instead of simply taking a gas powered hedge trimmer and removing the upper biomass, then composting the collected vegetation.

Well, I can probably guess that the herbicide industry has spent untold dollars in lobby money, lunches out, small gifts, sponsorships of conventions, parties and the like.  After all the good-old-boy network is still alive and well and smoothly functioning!

I am really disappointed in the baby-boomer generation.  Though my hope has always been that the non-conformist ideas of the 60's would change the world, in reality there was little if any change and never will be much change.  As baby-boomers got older and fatter we fell prey to the corporate ideal of 'falling in line' and listening to not having enough energy to do anything that was out of the ordinary. 

So today I am hoping, younger generations, those in their twenties and thirties will actually implement change for the better across our world.

Local governmental decision makers are obviously still taking the easy way out with respect to urban green and habitat.  Poisoning stormwater ponds with mechanized spray is so much easier than harvesting and recomposting.  With spraying herbicides the bureaucratic bunch does not really even have to think!  All they have to do is buy the Roundup or other similar herbicide.  The more herbicide purchased the bigger the holiday parties the regional poison distributor throws, right?

Does anyone in your local public works depart even care that studies may exist showing a correlation between Monsanto's Roundup and Cancer, specifically non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.

So in the meantime, while all the migratory birds and other local wildlife are drinking and otherwise using stormwater ponds for habitat (well they once were - until all the vegetation was killed), foraging and communal. local city and county officials are still jumping on the 25,000,000 pounds per year purchasing program of the poison.

No wonder our once healthy cities are becoming unhealthy.

No wonder wildlife, migratory birds, insects and pollinators are fleeing the urban core.

What is  it going to take to get it?

Are we finally ever going to vote into office those who want to be good land stewards instead of good corporate supporters?

Hello young folk!  What are you going to do to fix the mess we baby boomers have created?

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Heart Healthy Urban Green Walls

I had my regular CT scan conducted by Flagler Hospital in St. Augustine, Florida last week.  The hospital was established along the tidal marshes of the Intracoastal Waterway south of St. Augustine.
Flagler Hospital, St. Augustine's Living Walls
 The hospital has had the wisdom to create flowering plant sanctuaries throughout the facility.  Using living walls the designers achieved both a security function and a very important therapeutic result with plants that offer evergreen privacy and flowering beauty.

As I was standing adjacent Flagler Hospital's living walls a number of wheelchair bound patients were rolling their chairs around the garden's interior.  To me the obvious patient impact was one of consolance, peace and  serenity.
Flagler Hospital, St. Augustine's Living Walls

For those patients living in hospice, dealing with traumatic injuries, or those with either acute and chronic illnesses, plants can impart much needed healing.

Thank you, Flagler Hospital for the foresight to make a hospital trip a little better with nature's beauty.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Urban Green for Cardiovascular Health

Unfortunately I am having a very difficult time writing anymore, as you can see from the frequency of my posts.

Florida Urban Permaculture Garden by Judy - compost, plant a seed & grow food

Many of you are aware, but for those that are not, I 'encountered' an Type A aortic dissection that started with an aneurysm in my aortic root and split the aorta down through my chest, into my abdomen, into my kidney and down through my leg into my foot.

I am really supposed to be gone.  However there is more work to do first.  There are lots of opportunity for the world to plant Urban Green and benefit greatly with respect to cardiovascular health, and overall health in general.  On those days I can get out of bed, I am here to encourage you to plant!

Florida Urban Permaculture Garden by Judy -Mix flowers and veggies for pollinator attraction

Urban Green can translate into excellent quality of life and strong longevity for a city's general population.  Thank God I have a wife who's passion is plants, for I cannot anymore garden with my health as it is.

And you can do it!  There is no real secret to good permaculture practices.

All it takes is the time to plant a flower or vegetable or fruit tree or other plant - anywhere!  On a patio, balcony, windowsill, in your gutters or on a rooftop!!!

Florida Urban Permaculture Garden by Judy -sandy soil works too - with LOTS of leaves and compost!

You don't need a big farm or a big yard to bring Urban Green back to the Urban Core. 

Over the next couple months, as I can type, my thoughts on why Urban Green is so important to cardiovascular health are going to be the topic.  We'll be sharing all of what we learned on why it is so easy to create Urban Green & why it is so important cardiovascular-wise!
Florida Urban Permaculture Garden by Judy -cooking herbs, rosemary & garlic chives growing close to front door

Hope you join us on this journey into health for the body and health for the entire world!

P.S.  I am looking to the garden for my healthy diet that will help heal what most say is non-healable.  But we shall see..........

Friday, May 17, 2013

Meadow Line - What A Great Urban Greening Project!

Check out this awesome idea about the blending/integration of wildflowers into transportation corridors!  I can see it here in Jacksonville!