November Update on Common Area Landscaping Status and Plans

November has been a very busy month for landscaping activities. Planned activities for the month included, fall color planting with the addition of new planter beds at the Phase 3 Avenue 40 entrance and expansion of planter beds at the other entrance gates. Fall tree trimming was completed and the replacement of trees has been completed for trees lost over the Summer due to high wind episodes, dead trees from heat-stress and disease. An example of one of our continuing problem trees is the African Sumac. We have many of these species in our community that were planted by the developer. However, the Sumac has been shown to be not suited for the prolonged extreme heat episodes. Another completed activity has been replacement of shrubs in Phase 1, 2 and 3, that died over the summer. Finally, trees that were planted too close to the Montecito Clubhouse and Fitness Center were identified for removal. The trees that are being removed are encroaching on the walls and roofs of buildings or are planted too close to the buildings or creating root-caused damage to the sidewalks and underground utilities.

The re-landscaping of the north side of Sun City Blvd in front of the Montecito Clubhouse and Fitness Center is nearing completion as well. Plants that have grown too large for the planter beds in the median at the Sun City Blvd entrance and the guard house have been removed. New landscaping for these areas is planned for early next year. Other plans for next year are a consultation with Hermann design group for design concepts to improve the look of the Jefferson Entrance.

The actions to reach a solution to mitigate the impacts of the chlorinated fountain water on the adjacent flowers and shrubs is ongoing. The flow rate in the fountains has been reduced to lessen the amount of water that can be blown on the plants during wind events. Early assessment of this approach has shown that this approach may be successful.

With completion of the planned projects, the focus of the Vintage Landscape team will be on maintaining the landscaping to keep all areas presentable. We look forward to the opening of all common areas for walking. The unfortunate irrigation water line rupture and washout of the berm on the south side of Sun City Blvd. has delayed the opening of the North Channel. The Vintage team is working diligently to repair the damage. Many thanks to Vintage and the DRM Facilities Maintenance team for their efforts on the repair and cleanup. Execution of future planed planting projects will wait until the spring, after the likely occurrences of frost events has passed.

Christopher Stevens, Chair
Landscape Advisory Committee