The Grounds department is responsible for maintaining BU’s urban landscape. Every spring, they plant over 150,000 plants, trees, and bushes including 18 varieties of flowers and over 50 types of trees, shrubs, and grasses. A staff of highly trained workers also maintains the outdoor areas by addressing trash and responding to graffiti and vandalism.
In keeping with BU’s commitment to sustainability, the Grounds department has introduced a number of eco-agricultural initiatives such as implementing organic lawn treatments. For example, to prevent infestations, they spray non-toxic dormant oil on trees and shrubs. To reduce water waste, the Grounds department installed rain sensors, which shut off sprinklers during precipitation. Drip irrigation systems also prevent water waste by dripping directly to the roots of plants. This is more efficient than spraying, which is less targeted and can result in water loss through surface evaporation.
In another effort to reduce water consumption on campus, the University has employed a strategy to capture rainwater that falls on campus, store it, and reuse it for irrigation on both the Charles River and Medical Campuses.