Skip to content

Posts from the ‘Green Spaces’ Category

Earth Week Day 3: Grow Your Own Food

It’s Earth Week!

Each day this week SLCgreen will post different tips and activities to challenge you to reduce your impact on the Earth.

Today, we are challenging you to grow your own food– whether that’s a pot of basil or something more ambitious.

April is the perfect time to think about planting seeds or starts and increasing your consumption of local food. Local food decreases the carbon emissions associated with food production and transport; preserves open space; supports local economies and wildlife; and so much more.

So what are you waiting for?

In the video above, Bryant Terry explains the benefits of farming in dense urban areas.

Growing food at home can be simple with the right tools – even in Utah. The first step toward growing your own food is assessing your resources. Do you have a yard space? Do you have sufficient sunlight or shade to fulfill plant needs? Do you have easy access to water on your property?

Answering these questions can help you decide if gardening onsite is best, or if you should look at other options in your area. Read more

Salt Lake City Seeking Sustainable Farmers

RFR

Salt Lake City has a unique opportunity to help maintain Salt Lake City’s agricultural heritage. We are currently seeking applications from farmers to grow fruits and vegetables on over 1.5 acres of City owned land adjacent to the Sorenson Unity Center at 1333 South 800 West and south of the Cannon Greens Community Garden.

The goal is to have a farm in operation this growing season.

The farmer selected to grow produce on the land must use sustainable methods, including drip irrigation. Toxic chemicals, chemical pesticides, herbicides, and synthetic fertilizer use are not allowed.

In addition to selling as much produce as possible at local Salt Lake City markets, stores, or restaurants, the farm will also have a farm stand that accepts Food Stamp EBT (electronic benefit transfer). Read more

Launch of Local Food Microgrant Fund

8f704c6e91e045c72378c71d940a59ce_xl

Salt Lake City is proud to unveil a new grant program, offering $85,000 to spur local sustainable farming efforts.

Because just 3 percent of the fruits and 2 percent of the vegetables consumed by residents are grown in Utah, this program aims to support a more resilient local food system.

In partnership with Urban Food Connections of Utah—the non-profit affiliated with the Downtown Alliance– we’ll be granting money to farmers who want to expand their operations with sustainability in mind. Read more

Mayor Biskupski and local gardeners celebrate Liberty Wells Community Garden’s first harvest

liberty_wells

Photo by Kyle Strayer

Mayor Jackie Biskupski commemorated the first season of the new Liberty Wells Community Garden on 1700 South and 700 East in a press conference with Wasatch Community Gardens and local gardeners on Tuesday, August 30th.

As the latest addition to Salt Lake City’s Green City Growers program, the Liberty Wells Garden is run by the non-profit Wasatch Community Gardens on city-owned land and provides plots for 44 gardeners to grow vegetables.

“Liberty Wells neighbors, including some of our newest resident refugee families, have come together to share knowledge and friendship, which produced this beautiful and sustainable garden,” Mayor Biskupski said. “We have put vacant land to good use while improving the community and good will at the same time.”

The Liberty Wells Garden broke ground in April, after site selection and approval from the city. The plot now has 44 gardeners, with a wait list of 29.

“We’ve been amazed to see the enthusiasm and positive energy put forth by the gardeners who make up our new Liberty Wells Community Garden,” said Ashley Patterson, Executive Director of Wasatch Community Gardens.

Britt Vanderhoof spends hours at the Liberty Wells garden each week.  “As an avid gardener, I’ve enjoyed the health benefits of eating fresh, organic, locally grown food. But as much as I love the taste of food fresh from the garden, I have enjoyed even more seeing the community around the Liberty Wells Community Garden come together to help grow this amazing garden into what it is today.”

Salt Lake City’s Green City Growers Program began in 2013 to support local food production on city property.  The city continues to evaluate parcels for potential garden sites as demand increases.

News stories:

Salt Lake Tribune

Deseret News

For more information please visit:

http://www.slcgreen.com/communitygardens

 

 

Purge your Spurge Competition

 

What is Myrtle Spurge?

Myrtle Spurge (Class 2 Noxious Weed of Salt Lake County) grows in large, scattered colonies on our Open Space of Salt Lake City. So we are getting ready to start the yearly purge! This specific time of year is very significant to the plant’s reproduction. We must dig up these plants before their “flowers” (actually colorful bracts) produce seeds very soon. These seeds spread easily and this plant out-competes native species. Please check out our fact sheet about Myrtle Spurge HERE 

How does the friendly competition work?

We will compare overall weights of Myrtle Spurge collected and bagged by each community. The winning Community Council will be given the annual title of “Top Myrtle Spurge Purger 2016” and some lucky group participants of that community council will receive prizes!

What will I need to bring/wear?

  • You will need to wear long pants and long sleeved shirts, no open toed shoes and bring a shovel, re-fillable water bottle and snack if needed.
  • Rubber (inexpensive dishwashing type) gloves are required when pulling spurge, bring your own from home, if you can. Or a pair will be provided.
  • Due to the nature of Myrtle Spurge, no one under 12 will be able to participate in this event and a parent or guardian must accompany the child.

Did we mention to bring a shovel?

When?

Saturday, May 7th
9 am to 12 pm

Where?

Each Community Council has been assigned an Open Space that is within your community or as close as possible. Your exact location can be found when registering for the event HERE

Don’t see your Community Council listed? Adopt one for the day or . . . . watch for Open Space’s Puncturevine Pull Party happening this summer!

Salt Lake City Announces New Partnership To Protect Children’s Future

HBBF-Presentation-FINAL-1-_Page_01Today Salt Lake City launches a new partnership with Healthy Babies Bright Futures (HBBF) to become one of the organization’s first cohort of Bright Cities. The Bright Cities program is designed specifically to help reduce or eliminate neurotoxic chemical exposures in children when they are most vulnerable.

Exposure to toxic chemicals is so widespread and the impacts on brain development are so severe that leading scientists and doctors call it “a silent epidemic.” When exposure to neurotoxic or “brain drain” chemicals is higher, so are incidences of ADHD, behavioral problems, cognitive delays, and low birth weight.

Studies also show that disproportionately high exposure to these chemicals is one important reason why children below the poverty line are more likely to have intellectual disabilities. While toxic chemicals are not the sole cause for these lifelong effects, they are among the most preventable.

“Through our partnership with Healthy Babies Bright Futures, Salt Lake City is making a commitment to improve the health of our children and our entire community,” says Mayor Jackie Biskupski. “The positive steps we take today to protect our children will last a lifetime and ensure a healthier and brighter future for all.”

Today Salt Lake City will begin phase one of the program, called the Beacon City phase. With support from HBBF, the City will complete an assessment of the current risks, priorities and opportunities related to neurotoxic chemical exposures. The City will also engage in a public process to educate the community and gather stakeholder input on a final plan to reduce or eliminate the impact of these dangerous chemicals on babies’ brains.

For more information on Salt Lake City’s involvement contact Bridget Stuchly at bridget.stuchly@slcgov.com or (801) 535-6438.

Healthy Babies Bright Futures is an alliance of non-profit organizations, philanthropies and scientists that designs and implements projects to reduce babies’ exposure to toxic chemicals during the most vulnerable and significant periods of development:  in utero and from birth to age two. M.ore information at https://hbbf.org/

Salt Lake City Searching for new Natural Lands Supervisor

Sometimes the bad things that happen in our lives put us directly on the path to the best things that will ever happen to us.

Salt Lake City’s Open Space Lands Program is currently hiring a Natural Lands Supervisor. This position is responsible for the development, oversight, and implementation of ecological restoration projects, weed mitigation on open space lands, and environmental outreach and engagement with the public.

To apply, please visit the job posting on the City’s website.  The position closes on February 21st.

Description: Performs duties associated with maintenance, protection and improvement of natural habitat areas, trails, restoration areas, and recreation facilities on city Open Space lands, and supervises semi-skilled work crews and unskilled volunteers in assisting with these duties.

Land Management: Coordinate and implement natural land management programs, including weed management and recreation management initiatives as directed by the Open Space Lands Program Manager and District Supervisor.  Routine maintenance of vegetation and amenities, including use of hand and power tools, operation of equipment such as backhoe, large trucks, utility vehicles and mowers. Ensures equipment is properly maintained and safely operated, and responsible for training of personnel in safe practices. A high volume of field work during relevant seasons can be expected.

Staff Supervision: Schedules tasks and assigns duties to unskilled, skil­led or semi-skilled work crews. Recommends changes in resource allocations, priorities, or programs. May prepare payroll and approve leave requests. Makes recommendations to management regarding personnel actions, including performance evaluation, rewards, recognition, disciplinary actions, budgetary matters, equipment needs, etc. Trains and evaluates subordinates. Maintains documentation on performance of all employees under his or her supervision.

Public Use Management: Manages use applications and permits, and maintains and disseminates program-related educational and informational resources. Maintains and manages open space signage and way-finding. Responsible for coordination and oversight of volunteer stewardship and research activities. Responsible for public outreach including visitor contacts, presentations at public events and meetings, hosting educational and interpretive outings, and natural area programming.

Maintenance Supervision: Supervises maintenance crews of both permanent and seasonal employees. Makes work assignments and ensures completion of projects. Trains and motivates employees on crews. Determines appropriate maintenance schedules and in performing preventative maintenance and restoration of open space lands and assets.  May be required to take after-hours calls and call out needed personnel to perform the work.

Project Oversight: Ability to read and interpret construction drawings and inspect restoration and enhancement projects to ensure Salt Lake City specifications are being followed. Inspects work in progress, which may include several different areas and projects covering multiple locations.  Ensures work meets performance quality standards. Solves performance problems in accordance with established guidelines.

Resource Management: Submits and schedules work orders, safety and vandalism reports, material requisitions, maintenance on equipment logs and inspection lists. Performs fixed asset monitoring and tracking to ensure all assets are accounted for, tracked, and maintained. Tracks supplies and materials and recommends purchases as necessary.

Routine Maintenance: Performs maintenance procedures, uses hand tools, and may operate equipment such as sanitation truck, backhoe, pick-up and large trucks, loader, sweeper, tamper and mower, as necessary. Ensures equipment is properly maintained, safely operated. Responsible for safe operations and training of personnel in safety issues.

Coordination: May work with other City agencies, public entities, and citizen groups to plan and implement projects or to resolve problems and concerns. May participate in public meetings. Works closely with Special Events before, during, and after to ensure public safety and protection of City property and assets. May act and take on the responsibility of the Manager in his/her absence and when otherwise assigned. Performs other related duties as required.

Minimum Qualifications: Three (3) years serving in a paid professional position in natural resources management, environmental education, or a related field. Education in Ecology, Environmental Studies, Recreation Management, or a related field may be substituted one for the other on a year-for-year basis up to two (2) years of experience.

Familiarity with best management practices as they relate to natural land management, habitat and native plant restoration, recreation management, and trail construction and maintenance. Ability to work safely and communicate safe work practices to diverse groups in challenging work environments.

Possess, or the ability to obtain within 6 months, State of Utah Department of Agriculture Noncommercial Pesticide Applicators License with Ornamental & Turf endorsement.

Possession of a valid driver’s license or driving privilege card. Possess, or the ability to obtain within 6 months, Class “B” Commercial Drivers License.

Ability to make repairs and perform routine maintenance with little supervision, operate chain saws, hand and power tools for landscape maintenance and trail building in a safe manner, and  perform physically demanding work, including backcountry travel on foot carrying equipment.

Proven effectiveness in communicating, coordinating and resolving conflicting issues with peers, the general public, and other governmental agencies. Ability to coordinate, schedule, and track work activities and staff, collect data, prepare reports and keep records. Demonstrated ability to work independently with initiative, self-reliance, time management, and dependability.

Ability to communicate effectively and relate to involved public and governmental agencies, sometimes under difficult circumstances.

Proficient in computer applications such as Microsoft Word, Excel, and Outlook along with specific asset and work management systems of Accela, and time keeping systems.

Ability to direct work order monitoring, reporting, load leveling and conduct operational analysis including coordinating a variety of work order requests and projects schedules to meet required time frames.

Desired Qualifications: Specialized knowledge of native and invasive plant species, and prior experience with weed control strategies & techniques including herbicide application.

Specialized knowledge of trail layout, construction & maintenance techniques.

Prior experience communicating with the public, including volunteers and youth groups.