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Bucky's Conservation plan

Page history last edited by PBworks 17 years ago

The Location which I have chosen is the Cul-de-sac in the middle of the University of Chicago Campus

 

WHAT IS YOUR BIG PROJECT TITLE?

1. The Aim

The aim of my plan will integrate more of the Oak-savannah prairie transition flora and fauna into the University of Chicago campus horticulture while reducing the amount of water consumption. This will maintain much of the beauty that the University of Chicago campus is know for, however, I will be transforming it into a more environmentally friendly space by reducing the amount of water consumption by using native Oak-savanna prairie species. Additionally, I will be placing signs that will identify the plants to increase the awareness of the loss of prairie that Illinois has experienced.

 

 

2. The benefits of the plan
1. It will increase awareness of the loss of the prairie that Illinois and the Midwest in general have experienced.

2. It will increase water conservation. This will also be noted on one of the signs. Despite the tremendous body of water that we have at our disposal it should not be wasted. [ANY REFERENCES TO THIS REGARD? EG http://chicagowildernessmag.org/issues/spring2007/water.html]

3. Integrate species native plants into the University of Chicago horticulture.

These three beneficial aspects to this plan will act collectively to increase awareness of the tremendous loss of Oak-savanna prairie that the Midwest has experienced. Moreover, it will address the problem of, and subsequently increase awareness of, the necessity of water conservation. Despite the resource of Lake Michigan, we must promote an increased awareness of the ecological effects of depleting the resources that we do have as a form of preemptive action.

 

3. Defining specific aims and principals at play in my plan

  1. Over arching aims of the project ecologically and aesthetically
    1. Ecological Principles of the Plan

                                                               i.            Bringing plants of the Oak-savanna to the University of Chicago campus will bring awareness of prairie loss

                                                             ii.            Reduce the water consumption

    1. Aesthetic aims of the plans

                                                               i.            Incorporate the natural beauty of the Prairie into the campus horticulture of the University of Chicago

  1. Implementing the Plan
    1. Connections between Morton Arboretum and the University of Chicago                                                     
    2.  I would like to establish a working relationship between the Morton Arboretum and the University of Chicago. Through this the preservation of the Prairie could be come integrated into the horticulture of the University.

                                                             ii.            The primary relationships between these two entities would hinge on a partnership with or constructing a cooperative relationship between Richard Bumstead, the University of Chicago’s head planner, and the research division of the Morton Arboretum. 

    1. First Phase

                                                               i.            The first phase of this plan will start simply with the conversion of the Cul-de-sac in the center of the University of Chicago’s Quadrangle into a small section of native plants. With a careful selection of plants, this would not interrupt the over all aim of the University to maintain its aim of beauty and status as a Botanical Garden.

1.      We will consult Richard Bumstead concerning what design will be most appropriate for the Cul-de-sac. [WHERE IS THIS CUL-DE-SAC? DO YOU HAVE THE IMAGES?]Considering the aim of this project is to reduce the amount of water that is consumed while also increasing the number of native plants that are involved I would like to have a design that minimizes grass space.

                                                             ii.            Design

1.      One of the most important aspects to this project is maintaining the beauty of the University of Chicago Campus. Thus, it is important that we take careful consideration of the new design of the Cul-de-sac when incorporating the plants of the Oak-savanna prairie transition.

2.      Below [WHERE?] are the current design of the Cul-de-sac and my proposed design of the Cul-de-sac. The two images below illustrate the changes that I am proposing.The top mage is a rendering of the original design. The majority of the area, some 112 square yards according to my calculations, is grass that is exposed to direct sunlight at midday and will require watering. The light green patches are tree beds.

3.      The image below represents the changes that I am proposing. I would like to populate the majority of the beds with prairie shrubs that require less water than the grass and are fitted for high intensity sunlight and are native to the oak-savanna transition prairies. This new space would remove the necessity of roughly 40 percent of the grass effectively implementing my three fold purpose of water conservation, introducing the prairie vegetation and maintaining the beauty of the campus.

                                                            iii.            Plants

1.      High Sunlight Intensity Plants

a.       The location that I have chosen has a high degree of exposure to sunlight. Consequently, the plants that will be closest to the center of the walkway must be able to withstand high intensity sunlight during midday and maintain turgor pressure. These plants can be procured from the Morton Arboretum.

b.      Using these plants will reduce the amount of water necessary to keep the Cul-de-sac beautiful. The reduction of the amount of grass that is used will be key to increasing the

                                                                                                                                       i.      Butterfly Milkweed                                                                                                                                    

                                                                   ii.      Big Bluestem                                                                                                                                  

                                                                                                                                     iii.      Indian Grass                                                                                                                                  

                                                                                                                                    iv.      [[??] ]

                                        2.      Plants located in the Tree beds

a.       There are eight tree beds located on the Cul-de-sac and I would like to use the following plants in their beds

                                                                                                                                       i.      Great White Trillium (Trillium grandiflorum): Native to Illinois, the Great White Trillium is a great plant to transplant. Beautiful flowers that blossom from April until June coinciding with the spring quarter. These plants can be donated by the Morton Arboretum.

                                                                                                                                     ii.      Lipstick Strawberry: blossoms from spring to fall and provides excellent ground cover while also thriving in most soils and can withstand extreme cold. Can withstand full sunlight. These plants are also found in the Morton Arboretum.

                                                                                                                                    iii.      Eco Bluebird Dwarf Crested Iris (Iris cristata ‘eco bluebird): Beuatiful groundcover well adapted for shady areas. Produces a spectacular purplish blue flower which attracts butterflies. Blooms in late spring. Grows to a height of between 6-8”. Should be plated between 12 and 24 inches apart.

                                                                                                                                   iv.      Lady Fern (Athyrium felix-femina): very popular during the Victorian era. This perennial grows to be 24 to 36 inches in tall. Attractive lacey leaves that are between 6-9” wide. Well adapted to growing from full sunlight to shade. Roots work well at preserving the moisture in the soil. [GREAT CHOICES!!]

b.      These plants will be adept at providing the necessary flowers to add to the beauty of the beds but also preserve moisture in the soil for the Trees

    1. Manuel Labor

                                                               i.            The manual labor will come from the University of Chicago Grounds Crew. This will make the implementation of this plan significantly easier.

                                                             ii.            The grounds crews could be guided by the plants that I have drawn up following the pictorial guides which I have drawn up. The following diagram illustrates the guide to the plants locations within the Cul-de-sac.

  1. Cost Benefit Analysis
  2. Establishing the long term purpose of the plan
    1. Bringing the prairie to campus

                                                               i.            This aim of this principle is implicit in exactly what it says. The aim of this specific project is to incorporate the beauty of the prairie into campus horticulture so that the presence of these native species can bring an awareness that would otherwise be impossible.

    1. Defining the presence of the Prairie on campus

                                                               i.            With the help of the funds of the University, this plan will easily be able to afford signs to identify the plants and explain the condition of the crisis that the ecosystem that these plants are native to is experiencing. These signs will have the scientific and common names of the plants, a biological description and ecological information on the plants and their environment.

                                                             ii.            With the help of these signs, the presence of the prairie will expand beyond the cul-de-sac. This helps to define the secondary aim of the project which will be to create an on campus conservation RSO (student run organization). [ANY INTERESTED STUDENT GROUPS?]

    1. Bringing conservation into the greater part of campus.

                                                               i.            With the help of the University of Chicago and the Morton Arboretum, we can reach the ultimate goal of my conservation plan which will be to integrate the rest of the Universities campus with the vegetation on the campus

  1. Recap and Summary
    1. The creation of a functional relationship between the University of Chicago and the Morton Arboretum is the key to the plan’s success. With this intact, there should be little to stand in the way of the Universities general integration of the Oak-savanna prairies flora.

  

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