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Crown Harbor Homeowner Association

Landscaping Committee

The goals of the Landscaping Committee include:

  • Improve property values (e.g., common areas appealing to potential buyers, views from units stay the same).
  • Reduce Association water usage in response to the California drought conditions and avoid non-native and invasive plants.
  • Spend within the landscaping budget allocated by the Board.
  • Maintain a safe complex (e.g., foliage does not obscure addresses, herbicides not harmful to people nor pets) whose attractive surroundings make Crown Harbor a great place to live for residents.
  • Follow a process that allows community input but is in compliance with the CC&Rs and relies on the expertise of landscapers, arborists, and stump removal experts.
zones

Landscaping Contract

The Landscaping Committee directs the efforts of the landscapers to maintain the Association grounds. Residents are requested to refrain from providing instructions directly to the landscapers. Special requests should be given to the committee instead. The committee follows a standardized process. Though landscaping occurs weekly in Crown Harbor, the complex is divided into landscaping zones, and only one zone is serviced on a given week. The bushes and shrubs are maintained using this longstanding bush and shrub policy.

trees

Tree Maintenance

The Landscaping Committee directs the efforts of the landscapers to trim the Association trees in accordance with the Association tree policy. Tree work is batched together to reduce travel time, use full days for each site visit, and minimize dumping fees. Residents are requested to refrain from providing instructions directly to the tree trimmers. Special requests should be given to the committee instead. A list of tree issues is maintained by the committee. The trees to-be-worked-on appear on the ongoing projects list.

water schedule

Watering Schedule

The Landscaping Committee has reduced Crown Harbor water usage as indicated in this EBMUD Report. In accordance with an EBMUD mandate, Crown Harbor currently waters only three times per week. At the onset of the drought, Crown Harbor was on a twice per week watering schedule; however, effective November 1, 2015, the EBMUD restrictions went from twice per week to once per week. After a rain, the committee turns the irrigation system off for 2 days. On January 1, 2016, EDMUD declared a Stage 4 Drought where no watering was allowed. On April 26, 2016, they changed the restrictions so watering could occur twice per week. In July 2016, the restrictions were lifted so watering could occur three times per week.

irrigation

Irrigation System

The aging irrigation system occasionally has leaks which are promptly corrected as soon as they are observed. The irrigation system is maintained by the landscapers. The Landscaping Committee is replacing the system with drip irrigation as part of a water use reduction project. The conversion is occurring using a phased approach based on a triage list.

common areas

Common Areas

Though pride of ownership is encouraged for all areas of the Association, even the garden areas immediately adjacent to individual units are technically common area. As such, changes such as replacement of plants should be approved by the Landscaping Committee. Far too many residents plant without checking on the eventual size, sun requirements, maintenance requirement, and water needs of their plantings. In cases where an owner makes a specific request for landscaping replacement or improvement, due to the limited association landscaping budget, the cost is covered by the owner or a combination of the owner and the association. Even when an owner obtains approval, pays for, and plants his own plants, he is taking his own chances as the watering schedule allowed by EBMUD may not sustain the life of the plants over the long term. New plants are to be selected from a plant palette.

projects

Community Projects

As a community building and cost-saving exercise, residents often gather on a Saturday and spread bark chips in the common areas. Based on the time of year when this happens, it is affectionately known as "Mulch Madness." Similar activities, like cleaning up sections of the complex, have also been coordinated. The committee has several ongoing projects. After using the median strip at the Crown Harbor entrance as a test project for water reduction, the committee is also assembling a triage list for converting the existing irrigation system to a water-saving drip system with drought tolerant plants. As part of doing so, the committee will investigate possible rebates from the East Bay Municipal Utility District.

bees

Bee Control

Nearly every summer Crown Harbor has at least one episode with ground wasps. They like the areas right along the public pathway. At a certain point in the nest's cycle, the wasps get very aggressive and go after humans and dogs that get near the nest. The wasps cannot be sprayed by a regular pest control company. A special insecticide is required because of the proximity to the Bay. The Association tries to solve the problem before they swarm and get angry.

comic
source: rhymeswithorange.com


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