Sponsor Post: Miramar Landfill's Plant Nursery
Posted Friday, November 4, 2011, 10:45AM
Have you ever heard of a landfill with its own plant nursery? In San Diego's only working landfill – the Miramar Landfill – that's exactly what you'll find. In an effort to make the landfill as environmentally friendly as possible, and as part of the city's contract with the Marine Corps, who owns the 1,400 acre plot the landfill is placed on, the Miramar Landfill features an on-site nursery.
The nursery at the landfill is present not to grow plants for purchase by the community, but to accelerate the revegetation process. Revegetation simply means that the city is putting native San Diego plants over the areas of the landfill that have already been closed down. Here's how the process works and how the nursery comes into play:
- When new parts of the landfill are opened for use, the ground is dug deep down to bury the trash. The soil from the new areas of the landfill is saved to be used later to cover the waste.
- When an area of the landfill is deemed full, the revegetation process begins when soil is spread over the top of the waste to create a plantable area. Since the soil comes from deep in the ground, it doesn't have many nutrients for plants to grow with, so the soil is amended with mulch. Right now, San Diego is also looking at using compost to re-mineralize the soil.
- The soil is seeded either by hand or by using a mechanical seeder.
- To make the revegetation process go more quickly, plants that are grown in the city's greenhouse, which can grow up to 30,000 plants at one time, are planted over the soil, as well.
By using native plants and propagating about fifty acres of land each year, San Diego hopes to someday return the Miramar Landfill back to its original natural state.
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