Landscape Architect & Specifier News

JAN 2019

LASN is a photographically oriented, professional journal featuring topics of concern and state-of-the-art projects designed or influenced by registered Landscape Architects.

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Space is needed for wildlife to raise their young. Most species establish territory and defend it. For example, bluebird nesting houses must be 300 feet apart or the bluebirds will fight each other. Wood ducks and purple martins do not defend territories. Loons prefer 100 acres of lake or wetlands, and ruffed grouse need 10 acres. Restoration Gardens One example where landscape architects have been able to develop a project incorporating wildlife and the essential elements to enhance the regenerative biodiversity of the site is a hundred-acre project located about 11 miles southwest of downtown Detroit called the Marathon Gardens. Over the past fifty years, hundreds of residential lots in this heavily industrial area had been abandoned, burned out or deteriorated to ruins, rendering much of the neighborhood uninhabitable. As an early action to assist the City of Detroit in repairing the blighted landscape, Marathon Petroleum Company LP (MPC), whose facility is located adjacent to the property, initiated a purchase program to acquire properties from those willing to sell with the intent of repurposing the land for environmental benefit. Left:This is a bat box. Bats are known to help the natural ecosystem, as they are nighttime pollinators that also eat mosquitos and other bugs that harm vegetation. According to bigbatbox.com, a site that explains the benefits of bat houses, bat waste (also known as guano) is a source of fertilization and helps distribute seeds. PHOTO CREDIT: DIANNE MARTIN, ASTI Top, Right: Green herons reside in coastal and inland wetlands, nesting in wet places with trees and shrubs for shelter and nesting space. They usually hunt by wading in shallow water, but sometimes they dive deeper for prey. These birds feast on small fish, insects, amphibians, rodents and more. According to The Cornell Lab of Ornithology, this species has experienced a gradual decline over the last few decades due to habitat loss by the draining or development of wetlands. PHOTO CREDIT: BRAD KASSUBA, ASTI Bottom, Right: Evidence of beavers in the oxbow. Beavers live around water such as ponds, lakes and marshes. These animals use severed branches and mud to construct their homes. January 2019 45

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