Considered a “rock star” of landscape design, Piet Oudolf has headlined in gardens worldwide. And he’s coming soon to Dagsboro.
With a thick shock of white hair, this Dutch master of meadows toured Delaware Botanic Gardens (DBG) the first time on Oct. 18. Located on Pepper Creek, the 37 acres of forest and former soybean fields are waiting to become a world-class public garden a mile east of Dagsboro. Plans call for the first phase to open in 2017.
Oudolf has agreed to transform about 1.5 acres into a colorful, rippling meadow.
“Oudolf is becoming recognized as one of the most transformative garden designers of our time,” stated landscape architect Rodney Robinson. “His influence spans an international scale. I can’t think of a better garden designer to launch the Delaware Botanic Gardens.”
Oudolf’s association with the garden will increase its visibility, said Holly Shimizu, former executive director of the U.S. Botanic Garden.
Deciding against using the results of a 17-year old report, which couldn’t include data for events such as Superstorm Sandy, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has instead elected to pursue a new hydrodynamic study of the Ocean City Inlet to determine the cause of its constant shoaling.
The Delaware State Legislature has made a number of changes to the Beach Preservation Act in past decades, and the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) is now trying to put those changes into action by writing new regulations for beachfront building and use.
Claudia West, planting designer and ecological sales manager at North Creek Nurseries, will discuss “Wild and Neat: Native Plants that Bridge the Gap between Horticulture and Ecology” on Sept. 26 from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Frankford Public Library.
The Bethany Beach area is already at risk of losing the free recycling drop-off at Fresh Pond State Park, due to the tremendous amounts of non-recyclable garbage that is being dumped there.
“We might have to close the facility if we cannot curtail the illegal dumping that has been going on there,” said Mike Parkowski of the Delaware Solid Waste Authority (DSWA).
But that would suit nearby residents just fine.
Ocean Village is a private neighborhood located across Coastal Highway from Fresh Pond. For them, the “terrible eyesore” of televisions, furniture, construction debris and once, a toilet, is just the beginning.
Ocean Village opposed the recycling center being there even before people started treating the recycling cans as garbage dumpsters, before the lingering food attracted wildlife, which residents said crosses the highway into their neighborhood.
Several months and thousands of dollars later, the people who oppose oyster aquaculture in Beach Cove finally have some hard data to support their claims.
As resident James P. Bond said, “The scientific reasons as to why this is a poor location are very convincing.”
A few careless people could ruin things for everyone, as the recycling drop-off at Fresh Pond could close entirely if people continue dumping garbage there.
The Delaware Solid Waste Authority (DSWA) maintains 61 recycling drop-off centers in Delaware, but staff have had their fill of picking up mattresses, bicycles, patio furniture and other junk from the Bethany Beach site.
Holts Landing State Park may have already seen what seemed like its heyday, but to the state parks system and reinvigorated volunteers, now is the perfect time for a revival. The hidden park near Millville is celebrating its 50th anniversary with Outdoor Family Fun Night on Tuesday, June 30, from 6:30 to 9 p.m.
Outdoor games will be provided, such as cornhole, horseshoes and ladder golf (in which players attempt to loop a string with two golf balls around a ladder-shaped PVC pipe goal).
Park naturalists will do hands-on activities before the sun sets, including seining for critters in the bay. After dark, they’ll point out stellar constellations in the night sky.
Meanwhile, families can relax and roast marshmallows by a bonfire. Those attending should pack their own picnic dinners, bug spray and blankets for stargazing.
The Back Bay Strummers will bring their strings to perform live music.
South Bethany Town Hall may never have seemed so small when 100 people tried to fit inside for a public meeting about the future of local flood mapping. Most of them wanted to know exactly why their flood-risk designation changed, and what they can do about it.
DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers on June 1-7 made 1,743 contacts with anglers, boaters and the general public, including 129 vessel boardings for boating safety and fishing regulation compliance checks. Officers responded to 42 complaints and issued 34 citations.
Sussex County Administrator Todd Lawson this week provided an update regarding the Environmental Protection Agency’s rule related to the “Waters of the United States” at the request of Councilman George Cole.
Lawson said the rule was introduced on May 27 and was written in conjunction with the EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
Good Earth Market will hold its 8th Annual Arts & Crafts Festival on Saturday, May 30, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on the market’s grounds in Clarksville.
A new project along Bethany Beach Loop Canal could see the marsh there slowly restoring itself.
The Delaware Center for Inland Bays has brought the Living Shorelines program to a small chunk of wetlands near the canal, just north of Route 26. By installing pine logs in the shallow water, the CIB hopes to preserve and even rebuild the marsh, naturally.
The goal is to avoid “hardening” shorelines with bulkheads, riprap and seawalls, all of which diminish wildlife, said Sally Boswell, CIB education and outreach coordinator.
In the shallow water, 10- to 20-foot logs were staked in the Salt Pond shallows in a herringbone pattern. It creates a breakwater, so the water is calmer behind the logs on a tiny strip of land that delineates the canal and protects the mainland.
Plenty has happened around the community over the off-season. In case you’ve been out of town, or have just been too busy to stay on top of things, here are some of the items that could most affect your summer season.
Chris Bason, executive director of the Delaware Center for the Inland Bays (CIB) spoke to the Sussex County Council earlier this month about their master plan for James Farm Ecological Preserve.
The CIB’s mission is “to promote the wise use and enhancement of the Inland Bays and their watersheds,” in a variety of ways, including restoration, scientific research and educational outreach.
“A big part of our educational program is the James Farm,” said Bason.
James Farm covers 150 acres, located on both sides of Cedar Neck Road, just outside of Ocean View. Bason said it’s a unique preserve in that it has a wide variety of ecosystems that are characteristic to the area.