Sustainability in Landscape Services

Wednesday, March 30, 2022
Written by:
lanscape with trees and compost pile
lanscape with trees and compost pile

I’m Richard Wahl manager at Landscape Services I have been with the university for 51 years. I have worked and or over seen different operations through my tenure with the University. Includes Equipment maintenance, Landscape construction, Hardscape construction, Snow duties, Signage and Site amenities, and Recycling and Waste management (2002-2020).  As our Department works to provide students, faculty, and staff a safe and inviting campus setting and environment. There are many things that happen behind the scenes within our operation while reducing, reusing, and recycling providing a sustainable environment for the campus community.

Equipment; purchasing equipment that provides multiple operational functions with interchangeable attachments for seasonal operations.  With maintenance technology and improved lubricants has extended service schedules, while we also recycle used oils, filters, antifreeze, batteries, tires, and misc. steel products.

Landscape construction; salvaging top soils from projects, recycling of materials for mulch and compost.

Landscape materials; converting leaves, trees, branches, broken pallets, and misc. wood products into compost or mulch to reuse back into the landscape.

Hardscape construction; recycling for reuse or repurpose of concrete and asphalt materials, also steel and rebar.

Recycling; working with multiple grad assistances for recycling coordinators from 2002-2020 improved recycling/diversion rates through their help and efforts from 12% to 60%. Also applied and received grants 2008-2016 that included 2 yd. dumpsters, tip carts, 65 & 96 gal totes, 12’ box truck, and recycling flags for recycling, including 11 drink filling stations on campus.

Waste management; updated routes and schedules, installed weight scale systems to provide information for services and recycling efforts. Team involvement and services include recycling books, paper, cardboard, cartridges, plastics, pallets, and steel/tin. With on call and special requests, events notices and misc. services.