Whiteman housing battles grass
By Whiteman Housing Office, 509th Civil Engineer Squadron
/ Published August 01, 2011
WHITEMAN AIR FORCE BASE, Mo. -- Now that summer is fully upon us, so is the grass. The base housing area represents approximately 12 percent of Whiteman's total acreage and that's a lot of grass that housing occupants are collectively responsible for mowing and maintaining.
The efforts by everyone to maintain the landscaping are appreciated during this extremely hot summer. However, there are important policies and standards that every base housing occupant needs to be aware of with respect to grounds care.
Housing occupants are responsible for:
· Maintaining and mowing 100 feet from your home or reasonable natural boundary.
· Mowing as necessary to maintain a neat appearance; not to exceed 3.5 inches.
· Edge sidewalks, curbs, driveways, etc.
· Removing grass from cracks, driveways, curbs and doorsteps.
· Trimming grass around foundations, fences, timbers and decorative lawn items.
In order to allow occupants to plan ahead; the Whiteman Housing Office has set weekly yard inspection dates for the following neighborhoods:
· Tuesdays - Woodview
· Wednesdays - Midland and Lakeside
· Thursdays - Ridgeview and Bear Lake
Yards that are not in compliance with the previously listed standards will be issued tickets. The first deviation from the standard will result in a hint. The second and third deviations will result in notices with a copy sent to member's squadron. The fourth deviation will be escalated to the 509th Mission Support Group commander.
The common areas within housing are maintained by the housing maintenance contractor. These areas are maintained to the standard of four to six inches and have been pre-identified and negotiated through contracting process. (See Whiteman Base Housing for maps of the common areas).
There are a many tips that can help each occupant transform their yards from "ok" to "excellent".
· Water grass as needed to ensure it receives a minimum of one inch of water per week from either rain or applied water. Early morning and evenings are the best times for watering; mid day and overnight watering are not recommended.
· Mowing should not be done when yard is wet due to potential of rutting and soil compaction. Set mower to height of three inches (especially during hot, dry summer) to help conserve soil moisture, prevent weeds from germinating and put less stress on the grass. Mowing the lawn too short or mowing too much during a single cut may cause damage and makes the lawn more susceptible to drying out during the hot summer months. Edge around house foundation and fence and remove weeds from flower beds.
Whiteman is currently projected to privatize our Military Family Housing late fall/early winter. With privatization will come some nice perks and mowing relief; a comprehensive yard service will be provided to include mowing, edging and removal of debris in all common areas, front yards, and non-fenced backyards (within first three years of privatization, fences will be installed at all units that do not have fences at time of closing). The private owner will also prune shrubs and maintain tree canopies at safe height. Residents will only be responsible for mowing lawns inside the fenced areas and maintaining landscaping that they install themselves.
For questions, contact the base housing office at 660-687-7692.