A core strategy identified in the Deerfield Park District Strategic Plan adopted in 2017, focuses on Going Green and Environmental Stewardship. The Deerfield Park District is committed to protecting the environment while meeting the recreational needs of the community. We believe it’s our responsibility to conserve our natural resources and we are committed to doing our part.
In 2019, the Deerfield Park District conducted a residential survey which garnered interest in a district Beekeeping Program. In 2021 we installed hives that house 10,000 bees. These hives are managed, maintained and harvested by local, dedicated volunteers.
Top Benefits of Beekeeping
- Can provide a great sense of community.
- Honey bees are an essential part of food production; bees are responsible for pollinating about one-third of our food that sustains us.
- Honey is a delicious and highly nutritious food.
- Beekeeping has positive ecological consequences. Bees play an important role in the pollination of many flowering plants, thus increasing the yield of certain crops such as sunflower and various fruits.
Did you know that we reduce Nonpoint Source Pollution by adding Rain Gardens in all of our new park renovations?
A rain garden is a depressed area of native shrubs and flowers to collect rainwater and reduce runoff. Rain gardens are effective in removing up to 90% of nutrients and chemicals and up to 80% of sediments from the rainwater runoff. Compared to a conventional lawn, rain gardens allow for 30% more water to soak into the ground. [source]
Our rain harvesting unit at Woodland Park collects water, storing it for toilet flushing and maintenance. Just 1″ inch of rainfall on Woodland Park shelter’s 1,560 square foot roof produces over 900 gallons of runoff. In an average year, over 36,000 gallons of rainwater will fall on the roof. That’s enough water to flush the toilets in the shelter 22,500 times!
Benefits of Recycled Rainwater:
- Reduced water runoff
- Conserves potable water
- Improved stormwater management
- Rainwater is naturally soft
- Low maintenance cost and requirements
- Reduce the potential of flooding
In 2021, the parks department continued to develop natural areas at Briarwood, Trail Tree, Jaycee and Woodland Parks by removing invasive woody plants, overseeding with wildflower seed mix and planting over 100 perennial plants.
The district also worked closely with Go Green Deerfield to support Friends of the Chicago River during the Chicago River Day Volunteer event at Briarwood Park Nature Area annually in May. Please check our calendar of events to sign up to volunteer for this event.
The parks department staff added no-mow zones at Deerfield Golf Club in 2020, reducing emissions and rededicating those areas to native plantings.
In 2020, the parks department staff planted 97 native shrubs and plants at 9 native plant sites spanning 19.25 acres. Over twenty varieties of 48 trees planted replaced 42 trees affected by pests or diseases.