Sustainability in Landscape has many different meanings. At Rexius we define a sustainable landscape as an approach to landscaping that emphasizes plant health, soil health, water quality, and resource conservation. Sustainability does not necessarily mean the elimination of inputs into the landscape, i.e., fertilizers, synthetic compounds, labor, capital, etc. Rather, sustainability means the creation of outdoor spaces that utilize fewer inputs, are environmentally friendly, and are self-perpetuating over a period of time. Most importantly, a sustainable landscape demonstrates a harmonious relationship between the natural and created environment.
Millions of dollars are spent each year designing, implementing, and maintaining urban landscapes. Unfortunately, long-term problems are caused when these processes are not carried out properly. Many of these problems can be avoided or reduced by utilizing sustainable landscape practices. A landscape developed with sustainable practices will improve the environment by conserving resources and reducing chemical applications. A sustainable landscape will also reduce labor inputs making it less expensive overall to implement and maintain. Rexius is committed to accomplish this goal by offering alternatives to our customers that reflect a more sustainable approach.
Plant Selection of the right plant for the right place. Choosing the right plant for the right place and purpose adds greatly to the sustainability of a landscape:
- Locate sun and shade areas of your landscape and identify other concerns, color, views, or privacy?
- Select appropriate plants according to environment and other concerns
- Pick plants that resist pests and use less water
- Group plants by their needs
Protect and Build Healthy Soil with recycled compost and mulch. Compost and the beneficial organisms contained in it keep our landscapes healthy by:
- Providing a natural organic protection against soil erosion and sediment loss
- Creating loose soil structure that allows air, water, and plant roots to penetrate into the soil
- Recycling nutrients and making them available to plants
- Storing water until plants need it
- Protecting plants from pests and diseases with a microbial rich environment
Consider Natural Lawn Care as an option. Turf and lawns are where we often work the hardest, and use the most chemicals and water, while producing the greatest amounts of pollution:
- Mow higher (2 to 3 inches), mow regularly, and leave the clippings
- Fertilize moderately in May, July, and October with a “natural organic” or “slow release” fertilizer
- Water wisely
- Core Aerate to increase oxygen in soil and improve water penetration
- Topdress with compost to improve soil health
- Use compost tea to help reduce disease and increase soil health
Water Wisely for healthier plants. Many of our common plant problems are caused by either over or under watering:
- Water deeply, but infrequently
- Moisten the whole root zone
- Use automatic irrigation systems efficiently to conserve water consumption and provide proper amounts for plants’ needs
These are some of the many things that you can do to build a more sustainable approach to your landscape. Rexius is happy to discuss any alternatives with you that fit your particular needs.
Partnering with the community has always been one of the guiding principles in our 70 plus year history. At Rexius, Community is not tired, uninspired rhetoric that we draw from – it’s who we are. Rexius is very proud of the employees that make the company what it is today. Our employees are not only our most valuable resource; they are the key to our longevity and success. They are your next door neighbors, your friends, and acquaintances that contribute to this community in many different ways. They are coaching a youth basketball team to leading a neighborhood action group looking for ways to improve our community through volunteer service. The people of Rexius are making a difference in this community.
Rexius is also happy to contribute financially through a “Cash Back to the Community” program. For all retail bulk deliveries made in our community, Rexius is giving 2% cash back to the organization of your choice. You can support your favorite non-profit organization by doing business with Rexius, and it’s your choice where the cash is given. This is just another way we can continue partnering with those in the community who need our support.
Community Parks and Open Spaces
Rexius is also making a contribution to the community by being involved in the building of quality parks and open spaces for all to enjoy.
An example of that work was just completed by Rexius in 2004, and the City of Eugene won the People’s Choice Award in our region by the American Institute of Architects for Oakmont Park.
Rexius has also built several other parks and open spaces in the past few years, including the popular courtyard in Oakway Center, Hayward Field, Irwin Park, Danebo School fields, Bethel Park, Tugman Park, and contributor for the Babe Ruth Baseball Complex in north Eugene. Rexius was also privileged to head up the landscape portion of the Autzen Stadium remodeling project and Pape Field for the University of Oregon.
Proving Sustainable Employment
Sustainability in business is absolutely necessary in making our economy thrive and survive in the future. That’s part of what sustainability is all about. For the past 70 years and for the future years to come, Rexius is committed to being a profitable company that provides a viable place of employment offering a family wage for its employees. By supporting local business, you can help us accomplish these goals, and strengthen the local economy.
Sustainability for the environment has become more and more of a concern over the last several decades, and the ideas for how we protect and conserve our natural resources are as wide-spread as the world we live in. The one thing that we all know and agree on is that we all have to do our part in changing our lifestyles and habits where we can to minimize our impact on the environment that we are so dependent on. This is a global concern, but the best place to start making a difference is right here at home in our local community. Rexius is committed to making responsible choices in the way we conduct business, and will continue to improve year by year as we discover new ways of being good stewards of our environment.
Here are just a few things that we are doing in our business in our commitment to a sustainable approach:
- Our trucks and equipment are currently using the following products:
- Low Sulfur Diesel (currently), Ultra Low Sulfur Diesel – April 1, 2005
- Inherently biodegradable and non-toxic PCAW hydraulic oil
- Re-refined oil in small engines
- Low emission/low smoke oil in 2 stroke engines
- Re-cleaned air filters
- Water/detergent based cleaners rather than solvents
- High efficiency replacements on all electric motor
- We recycle: used motor and gear oils, used steel oil filters, antifreeze, scrap steel, aluminum and copper, steam cleaning water, fluorescent tubes, cardboard, glass, tin and paper.
- Our shop & manufacturing facilities use efficient T-8 bulbs and electronic ballasts
- Packing material used for shipping is our own recycled shredded paper
- We recycle thousands of tons of yard debris from our community and close the loop by turning it back into high quality products for landscape and environmental protection.
- We promote the use of organic based erosion control techniques on a national scale (see more at www.ecoberm.com)
These and many other ideas have been adopted in an effort to promote a more sustainable approach to how we operate. We continue to look at every option available that fits within that goal.