Landscape and Grounds Department receives honors

Posted November 12, 2010

The Landscape and Grounds Department at ACU has been recognized with two awards for keeping the campus beautiful year-round while conserving natural resources.

Jacob's DreamThe Professional Grounds Management Society cited ACU's Jacob's Dream with an Honor Award as a part of its 2010 Green Star Awards competition, in Louisville, Ky., Oct. 27-30. ACU was also recently given the Mayor's Water Conservation Award for the City of Abilene for its effort to curtail water usage.

"These are great honors to receive," says Corey Ruff, director of landscape and grounds. "It not only recognizes the work put in by our staff, but also ACU's commitment toward enriching campus life through our care and concern for its green spaces."

In the last five years, ACU has reduced its water usage by more than 40 percent using several techniques, including:

  • Faubus Lake collects approximately 40 percent of the precipitation on campus.
  • Sensors on irrigation control boxes are set to shut off in the event of rain and freezing temperatures.
  • Low precipitation rate sprinkler nozzles allow more water to soak in before it starts to run off.
  • Sprinkler heads with built-in check valves keep all the water from draining out of the feed lines when the system shuts off.
  • A moisture sensing water system takes soil moisture readings, adjusting the run-time according to the amount of moisture that is needed to sustain the plants roots system.

"We continue to look for new technology to help with water conservation," says Ruff. "With 150 acres under our management, there are plenty of challenges, but we are dedicated to conserving one of our most precious resources."

Founded in 1911, PGMS is an individual membership society of grounds professionals dedicated to advancing the grounds management profession through education and professional development. 

For more information about PGMS, visit