Want to help the water? Trees, yes. Leaves, no.

Fall is an ideal time to plant trees. Roots that have three seasons to establish before the hot, dry summer give seedlings a promising start.

Trees filter water runoff before it enters the stormwater drainage system. This prevents dirt, nutrients, and bacteria from washing into streams and lakes. Trees also reduce the amount of runoff rushing to creeks in a rain storm.

Trees add value to your property and provide shade, beauty, cleaner air, and wildlife habitat. They can protect your yard from erosion when planted along creek banks. Together with native bushes and grasses, trees act as buffers between pollution sources and waterways.

If trees are so good, why are leaves bad for the water? As leaves decay, nutrients that feed algae enter the water. This reduces oxygen in streams and lakes and can lead to fish kills and bad tasting drinking water.

Streams will always have natural sources of falling leaves. But when too many people sweep or blow yard leaves onto streets, the extra leaves in the drainage system cause a problem.

Doing your part:

  • www.TreesAcrossDurham.org lists trainings and projects to help keep Durham shady.
  • Keep it neat; no leaves on the street. Compost them or use your yard waste bin.
  • Report illegal leaf dumping: (919) 560-SWIM.
  • Plant trees, bushes, and grasses near stream banks.

Durham Seeks People’s Choice Votes for 2014 Golden Leaf Awards

Residents who think there are certain Durham properties that have outstanding curb appeal are now invited to vote for the properties they like the best.

The Durham City-County Appearance Commission and Keep Durham Beautiful, Inc. are seeking voters for the People’s Choice award for the 2014 Golden Leaf Awards. Properties up for the award include new developments and buildings in Durham that provide positive attributes to the built environment. Homeowners, building owners, architects, landscape architects, developers, realtors and anyone involved in design, planning and construction in Durham have entered projects completed within the last five years for this year’s competition.

Residents are encouraged to visit http://www.durhamgoldenleaf.com to review all of the nominated properties and cast their vote for their favorite project. The voting period for the People’s Choice award is open until Tuesday, November 18.

For more information, email info@durhamgoldenleaf.com or contact Planner Wade Griffin with the Durham City-County Planning Department by email at Wade.Griffin@DurhamNC.gov or by phone at (919) 560-4137, ext. 28229.

Creek Smart Workshop @ Organic Transit

NC Cooperative Extension is co-sponsoring with Ellerbe Creek Association to offer a FREE half-day hands-on rain garden and rain water harvester installation demonstration event:

Creek Smart Workshop @ Organic Transit with optional Elf and walking tours of Creek SmartTM practices. See attached flyer. (tours run Noon-2 pm) for registered participants

When: Saturday, November 8, 2014 – 9am-12noon

Location: 311 W Corporation St., Durham, NC 27701

This hands-on workshop will teach you how to install your own rain garden and rainwater harvesting system that improve your property and protect water quality.

  •  Organic Transit will be offering free test rides to participants!
  •  Ellerbe Creek Assoc. will be offering walking tours of the ‘Creek Smart’ program sites just around the corner from Organic Transit.
  •  Full Steam Brewery is a short walk away for thirsty adults after installing the rain garden and water harvester!

RSVP at http://ellerbecreek.org/support/event-signup.html or contact chris@ellerbecreek.org.

 

Recyclers needed for Nov 2 Food Truck Rodeo at Durham Central Park!

Please help Keep Durham Beautiful by signing up for a shift to help us staff recycling stations at the Food Truck Rodeo at Durham Central Park on Sunday November 2 from noon-4 pm. We’ll have 5 recycling/composting/trash stations and we need a volunteer at each station to help people learn where to put their waste. This is going to be an epic educational opportunity! Durham Central Park expects upwards of 5000 people if the weather is good.

Shifts are 11:30 – 2pm (includes setup) or 2-4:30 pm (includes take down) – seeking 8 people per shift to allow breaks. And please spread the word by sharing this invitation to anyone who may want to volunteer! Responsible youth who need service hours are welcome to help!

We’re using VolunteerSpot. Please sign up to be a Food Truck Rodeo Recycling Ambassador!
Here’s how it works in 3 easy steps:

1. Click this link to go to our invitation page on VolunteerSpot: http://vols.pt/wX62dX
2. Enter your email address: (You will NOT need to register an account on VolunteerSpot)
3. Sign up! Choose your spots – VolunteerSpot will send you an automated confirmation and reminders. Easy!
Note: VolunteerSpot does not share your email address with anyone. If you prefer not to use your email address, please contact me and I can sign you up manually.

America Recycles Day at Durham County Library November 15

Durham County Library will participate in America Recycles Day, the only nationally-recognized day dedicated to promoting and celebrating recycling in the U.S. The event will be from 10am until 12pm on Saturday, November 15, at North Regional Library, 221 Milton Rd. The event is free and open to the public.

This festival is for children and their families to explore recycling, composting, and saving energy through games, prizes, crafts, and a scavenger hunt. Participants will have the chance to meet with local organizations, such as Keep Durham Beautiful, Charge Ahead Durham, Durham County Extension Master Gardeners, and Durham County Waste Reduction Services.

For more information, call 919-560-0232 or visit durhamcountylibrary.org.

Durham County Library encourages Discovery, connects the Community and leads in Literacy. As a department of Durham County Government, the library furthers Goal 1 of the county’s Strategic Plan by enhancing cultural, educational and creative opportunities. For more information about the library, visit durhamcountylibrary.org.

 

Durham Seeks 2014 Golden Leaf Awards Nominations

October 26th Deadline to Submit Nominations

Residents who think there are certain Durham properties that have outstanding curb appeal are now invited to nominate those properties for the 2014 Golden Leaf Awards.

The Durham City-County Appearance Commission and Keep Durham Beautiful, Inc. are seeking nominations from the community to recognize new developments and buildings in Durham that provide positive attributes to the built environment. Homeowners, building owners, architects, landscape architects, developers, realtors and anyone involved in design, planning and construction in Durham are encouraged to enter projects completed within the last five years.

Visit http://www.durhamgoldenleaf.com to review the complete list of categories, submission criteria and nomination forms. All submissions are due by Sunday, October 26, 2014.

For more information, contact Planner Wade Griffin with the Durham City-County Planning Department by email at Wade.Griffin@DurhamNC.gov or by phone at (919) 560-4137, ext. 28229.

America Recycles Day Art Contest

America Recycles Day(ARD), the only nationally recognized day to celebrate and promote recycling, is on November 15.  Local governments across the country are planning special collection events, community presentations or other activities to educate their citizens about recycling programs.   This year, North Carolina will recognize ARD with a poster contest open to K-8 students in partnership with the Carton Council and Keep NC Beautiful.  The poster winner will have their poster printed and distributed to schools across North Carolina!  Please contact schools in your community and encourage them to have students enter to help promote recycling in schools.

Students can win fantastic prizes such as:

One $100 gift card
Two $50 gift cards
Recycling bins for their schools, or Recycle Guys stickers, recycled newspaper pencils, and activity books.

The deadline for entry is October 31st and full contest information and entry form can be found at: www.recycleguys.org

Durham Farm and Food Network – Oct 23 Public Forum Invitation

Durham County residents and those who work in Durham County are invited to join Durham County citizens and a broad coalition of community organizations for a local food public interest meeting on October 23, 2014.  The meeting will begin at 6:00 pm and run until 8:00 pm at the Shepherd’s House Church at 107 N. Driver St. in Durham.

The agenda includes exploring our mutual interests in food and agriculture and how we might work together to support vibrant farms, healthy people, thriving local economies, strong communities, and resilient ecosystems in Durham County.

The purpose of the meeting is to examining the relevance of a food council for Durham County and to take initial steps towards developing a council as a formal entity.

A food council is a group made up of representatives from the different parts of the local foods system, including consumers, producers, processors, retailers, local decision-makers, and other stakeholders including those working on environmental sustainability, health, food access, social equity, and animal welfare.

Every food council organizes in its own unique way, but most focus on assessing the local food system, identifying and bridging gaps in the system, and developing key linkages to drive action in the region and across the state.

For more information or to RSVP for the local food meeting, visit https://durhamfarmandfoodnetwork.wordpress.com

Come to the Durham EcoFair!

This is a great opportunity for you to learn about products and services to help you protect the environment, live a healthy lifestyle, and save on your utility bills!

When: October 21, 2014 from 12:30 pm – 6:00 pm.

Where: The Human Services Complex, 414 E. Main Street, 2nd Floor

Free give-aways and a scavenger hunt with prizes!

This will also serve as our grand celebration for Charge Ahead Durham.  (ChargeAheadDurham.org).  We will showcase all the hard work individual Durhamites have been doing to make our place a greener, healthier, safer place to live and announce our Grand Prize winners!

Cankerworm Prevention Workshops – September 17 and 22

CANKERWORMS: Those creepy green worms that fall from the sky

Want to learn how to get rid of them? Come find out!

Wednesday, September 17, 6:30-7:30PM – Cooperative Extension on Foster Street

Monday, September 22, 6:30-7:30PM – Kirby Horton Hall at Sarah P. Duke Gardens

Cankerworms are destroying our Willow Oaks. Join the band wagon to fight these pests. Find out how at our informational sessions with experts from Duke University, Durham County Cooperative Extension, and the City of Durham.

Let us know you are coming by signing up at www.TreesAcrossDurham.org  or call 919-354-2729.