Buffer Zone Planting for Zone 3

Discussion in 'Outdoor Gardening in the Pacific Northwest' started by Daniel Mosquin, Jun 23, 2003.

  1. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Paragon of Plants UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    The following was received via email:

    (from Williams Lake, British Columbia)

    Hello:

    I am looking for advice on what should be planted in a Zone 3 environment. We are going to have a new development placed directly behind our home, in which the landscape of the land will be dramatically changed. We will have a road placed behind us where now we now have a forest.

    We have been promised a buffer zone of 66 meters, but the last 11 meters of land will be sloped up 28 meters. I would like to know if you could give me some advise on what should be planted. We are worried about the sloping land sluffing with heavy rainfall or in the spring with winter runoff. We have been promised a sum of money to provide landscaping, but I'm not sure what should be planted that would do well here in our zone. If you can offer any advice or know of anyone that can help us to plant properly in this area I would appreciate any help. We have been told Sumac would be a good choice, is that correct?
     
  2. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Paragon of Plants UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    I don't know the best answer to your question, but I have a few suggestions.

    One option is to contact a local nursery with landscape installation experience - they would probably be able to suggest plantings that would work for your situation. To find someone local, I suggest you visit the British Columbia Landscape and Nursery Association web site and use the "BCLNA Member Search" link.

    I would also like to suggest that you use native plants in the rehabilitation work, if possible. While looking for information on this subject, I discovered that expertise in this area is available from researchers in Smithers, British Columbia. Symbios Research and Restoration is a company that worked for Forest Renewal BC and the Science Council of British Columbia on revegetation. The web site looks a bit outdated to me, but they are still active as one of the owners of the company lectured at the Harvard Forest at Harvard University this past spring on the subject of "Determining optimum seeding densities of a native plant mixture on degraded sites." Admittedly, your situation is on a smaller scale than what I think they typically deal with, but the problems are similar - erosion and runoff, sharp slopes, and so on - plus, they have experience with zone 3.

    The British Columbia Environmental Network has an article by the owners regarding Native Plants for Restoration.
     

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