The natural landscape is degraded in our heavily developed area. Participants will learn how trees above and soil below improve our water quality, our urban landscape and our quality of life at the 3rd annual mini-symposium at the Zoo: "Above Our Heads, Below Our Feet," part of the Putting the "U" in Urban Watershed Stewardship series. Brooklyn Centre Naturalists, Friends of Big Creek, Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District and Cleveland Metroparks sponsor the popular program to promote stewardship and contribute to healthier watersheds.
Participants will become savvy "middle managers" with top-down and bottom-up management of storm water runoff. You too can be a steward of our precious resources and contribute to a healthier watershed - starting in your own yard! Small changes can have big impacts!
The following featured speakers will share their knowledge:
Trees - Green Infrastructure
- Garrett Ormiston, GIS & Stewardship Specialist, Natural Area Division, Cleveland Museum of Natural History
- Our tree canopy - a natural system with water, air and energy benefits plus economic and aesthetic value too! How our urban forest functions and how careful selection and placement of trees minimize maintenance and maximize benefit.
Urban Soils and Water Quality - Conservation From the Ground Up
- Todd Houser, Storm Water Program Manager, Cuyahoga Soil & Water Conservation District
- Our urban soil is "disturbed." Get the dirt on our dirt - its composition and structure and how we can replenish it. Composting, worms and how it all works together to form a good rich soil with restored function as brown infrastructure.
Making the Connection: Water, Trees and Dirt
- Linda Mayer-Mack, Environmental Education Specialist, Watershed Programs Dept., Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District
- Each of us has a real and important role in the big picture of the ecological integrity of our region.
The 2012 Lake Erie Allegheny Partnership Native Plants of the Year are the following (download a PDF with photos and descriptions):
- Cardinal Flower (Lobelia cardinalis)
- Eastern Redbud (Cercis Canadensis)
- Redosier Dogwood (Cornus sericea)