Current Landcare Strategies
Land managers are locked into three primary strategies for landcare. The three primary strategies determine land management from the perspective and benefit of the seed industry and not by land managers responding to local social-ecological conditions. RSS allows local and immediate decision making for a variety of traditional and novel forms of turf management.
High-intensity landcare is becoming increasingly expensive to maintain, requiring continual inputs of time, labor, fossil fuels, pesticides, fertilizers and water in order to maintain. Economic realities, environmental concerns, and public perception are placing constrains on the amount of time, labor, chemicals, and water are allowed to maintain high intensity landscapes.
Low-intensity (aka No-Mow or Eco-Grass)
Low-intensity or “No-Mow” turfs offer land managers an alternative to “high-intensity ” landcare. “No-Mow” turfs seemingly offer a solution for some landscapes; however, no-mow mixes are typically composed of a single genus, such as Festuca¸ and limited to a relatively narrow range of environmental variance. No-Mow turfs are best suited to well drained soils and partial shade. Also, what “No-Mow” turfs fail to inform the land manager is that these turfs still need to be mowed over time or they will be subsumed by rank vegetation
Restoration offers the land manager another option in landcare. The designers of RSS have been involved in restoration for 20 years, having installed thousands of acres in the Midwest. Restoration is often assumed to maintenance free; however, one of the major drawbacks to restoration is that they still require significant inputs of time, labor and money to maintain a desirable state. The maintenance of restoration conflicts with management objectives. Without maintenance, restorations tend to become rank over time.
A New Landcare Paradigm
Resilience Seed Systems (RSS)
We apply concepts of resilience to design seed mixes suitable to a variety of environmental parameters and manager expectations. Resilience Seed offers a “SYSTEMS” approach to achieve sustainable landscapes. Resilience Seed is composed of native species that are configured into numerous functional groups that provide robust ground-layer vegetation through numerous environmental gradients and management regimes.
This ecological flexibility increases the “resilience” of these mixes, hence the name, and their capacity to provision numerous ecological services including: The ability for Resilience Seed to thrive in different environments under different management regimes
Each mix is composed of numerous native grass species that span an array of seasons and environmental gradients such as drought, wetness, shade, and sun. Specific mixes are designed for extreme environmental conditions, such as high salinity, frequently flooded situations, or hot dry conditions.
Resilience Seed Systems are suitable to a variety of maintenance regimes designed to achieve a variety of outcomes
Why Resilience (Sustainable) Seed Systems:
Land managers today have three principle strategies for landcare that include:
- high intensity turf
- low intensity or “no-mow” turf
- restoration to a “natural state”
Each strategy has associated threats. The primary threat is that each strategy locks the land manager into one particular management strategy that may not be sustainable for a particular site at a particular time. Resilience Seed Systems (RSS) offers land managers a new paradigm in landcare, where decisions are based on local objectives rather than the seed mix. RSS mixes are composed of multiple species, scientifically selected and blended to facilitate a variety of management strategies to achieve outcomes which are aesthetically, economically, and environmentally compatible.