The Edgemont Community Association has been operating the ELM (LEAF) Program since 2016. The first 3 years of the program was assessing the community and the condition of the public green spaces, parks, medians and boulevards.
Several ideas were explored including to improve the overall health of the turf and conditions of the existing shrub beds and flower beds. Our Landscape Maintenance Agreement with the City of Calgary stipulates we care and maintain the public green spaces and we can enhance our green spaces. We have improved the turf with more frequent mowing, fertilizing, aerating and irrigating where available. Our enhancements have included planter placements where the City allows.
We have worked on projects each year over and above the regular enhanced maintenance. We have added new flower beds, reconstructed existing flower beds, weed control where the City allows, addressed overgrown shrub beds by removing dead wood and cutting them back to rejuvenate the shrubs to improve their health and gone to a commercial approach to flower purchase, design and installation. Most of these activities are carried out on an ongoing basis as Edgemont is geographically a very large community and it takes time to address every area.
The ELM committee meets throughout the year and in November and December we plan our following year’s program and decide on what extra projects will be planned and budgeted for. In December 2019, we had a list of projects to work on as the budget allowed in 2020 which included:
- Replace the white planters with matching exposed aggregate planters
- Expand the flower bed in front of the waterfall in EDG157 located in Edelweiss Point
- Gopher control in green spaces with flower beds
- Re-sod around the ribbon bed and the 4-tier bed both located on Edgemont Blvd across from each other at the corners of Edgevalley Dr and Edenwold Dr.
- Partial street sweeping of main medians
- Extra pruning and cutting back of shrub beds
- Extra weeding to address every island and walkway aerating in designated areas
We were able to address and complete all of these items in the 2020 program within our approved budget. We were able to sell our old white planters and generate about $3,000. This money will be for ELM use only. Our flower displays were fabulous and we received many positive comments on the displays. Our displays were still viable right up to the middle of October before the first snow fall.
We could not have risen to these standards of care, maintenance and enhancements without the dedication of our landscaping team, Able Landscaping. Their years of experience and knowledge have been well proven in the care and beauty of our community. Able Landscaping has done a wonderful job working within our Board approved Annual Budget.
We would also like to extend our thanks to Barbara Kam, of Edenscapes, who along with her team have done an amazing job of our winter displays. She has done amazing displays all within our approved budget. Barbara also has some new display ideas going forward should the ELM committee decide to engage her company for the 2021 winter displays.
On October 30, 2020 we had our required 5-Year Reaffirmation Vote. We spent 3-4 months preparing for the vote day. We advertised extensively and the vote was very successful. We had 418 homeowners come out to vote, of which 380 voted for continuing the program and 38 voted not to continue. We want to thank everyone who took the time to come out and cast a vote.
We have invested in a lot of infrastructure over the first 5 years of the program with planters, garden beds and garden bed enhancements such as retaining walls. We have also vastly improved the flower density in the flower beds and planters. Our displays have been spectacular.
Moving forward we will invest in more turf maintenance with aerating, de-thatching, fertilizing and top dressing. We will work with our contractor to start replacing a percentage of annuals with perennials each year for our garden beds.
The 2020 Contract for the ELM Co-Ordinator, Sheldon Kingcott, was finished at the end of February 2021 and the ECA interviewed many people to find a replacement. The replacement hired by the ECA as the 2021 Contract Co-Ordinator, Sheri Pitka, started March 1, 2021.
The ELM Committee met in November to plan out the 2021 ELM program and to decide on what special projects to consider for the 2021 budget. Our landscape contractor, Able Landscaping, is entering into the second year of a two-year Edgemont contract with the ECA.
The audited 2020 ELM finances can be found at https://www.edgemont.ab.ca/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/Financial-Statement. The 2021 ELM budget with proposed projects was approved by the Board of Directors in February of 2021.
Read up-to-date information about the ELM program on our new website at https://www.edgemont.ab.ca/category/elm-leaf/
ECA ELM Director
2020 ELM Committee
Rick Wierzbicki, Barb Elms, Vishal Dalal, Min Cao, Helen Campbell