HOA Says Goodbye to Turf

In 2015, Casitas Alameda Homeowners' Association, a community of more than 400 homes in Alameda, sheet mulched 25,000 square feet of turf, and replaced that turf with 100% summer-dry adapted plants.  All compost and mulch used was recycled local material--generated from food scr tree trimmings and other clean wood waste.  Casitas also took this opportunity to not only reduce water use through more efficient planting and irrigation, but better manage water on site in general; the new landscape is graded to allow rainwater to seep into the soil and any runoff to drain to a cobble-lined dry creek bed.  Lastly, with 30+ distinct plant species, the new landscape increases biodiversity and provides pollinator habitat.  The benefits are astonishing:  

  • The addition of compost and mulch, new planting, and irrigation saves 276,000+ gallons of water annually
  • Sheet mulching the lawn in place kept 46 tons of turf out of the landfill
  • Using compost in the sheet mulch reduces greenhouse gas emissions by about 28 tons CO2E.

Project Details

Project area: 0.7 acres​ • Property owner: Casitas Alameda Homeowners Association​ • Property manager: Willis Management Group, Inc.​ • Landscape design and construction: Cagwin & Dorward​ • Location​: Verdemar Dr at Catalina Ave, Alameda, CA​ • Accessible to the public