Sustainability at Reed

Reed College canyon

Sustainable Practices in Reed Canyon

Restoration efforts are an integral part of all work undertaken in Reed Canyon, the 28-acre watershed located in the heart of campus. The canyon is home to a growing population of wildlife and native plants and includes the headwaters of Crystal Springs Creek, a tributary of the Johnson Creek Watershed; and Reed Lake, which has been deemed the oldest naturally occurring lake in Portland.

The canyon website has the latest restoration information as well as information about the recently completed Crystal Springs Headwaters Fish Passage and Restoration Project

In addition, the following practices and standards are part of the college's landscaping efforts, not just in the canyon but throughout campus:

  • Invasive pest management: herbicides used sparingly; insecticides or fungicides rarely, if ever
  • Native plants preferred
  • Hardy plants utilized
  • Lawn clippings mulched in place
  • Tree leaves recycled on site
  • Wood chips from pruning used for mulch in beds and for trails
  • Tolerance for percentage of diverse plant material in turf
  • Use of eco-lawn mixes that need less mowing and fertilizing
  • Maxi-com irrigation and weather station used for irrigation: records wind direction and speed, air temperature and evapo-transpiration; calculates previous day's run times and adjusts for current conditions; rain gauge overrides the system if measurable precipitation occurs during a watering cycle
  • Increasing use of drip irrigation
  • Optimum mowing, watering, and fertilization rates and timing
  • Fertilizers: mostly organic; any synthetic fertilizer contains zero phosphorus blend to discourage aquatic weeds
  • Widespread use of swales to treat run-off water; mapping and monitoring outfalls into the lake

We want to hear from you.

If you have ideas about what Reed could do to improve sustainability efforts on campus, send an email to the sustainability committee.