Mulch & Bugs

The City of San Jose Dept. of Parks, Recreation and Neighborhood Services (PRNS) have asked us to post the following explanation concerning the placing and then removal of mulch near Golf Creek:

A Fontana Park neighbor and resident reported swarms of insects in her backyard on Saturday, November 26th, 2011. Being concerned for her family and property she called the City for service.

A Parks Facility Supervisor reported to the scene. The Supervisor determined the insects identified as  Box Elder bugs (See picture at the right) were coming from large piles of mulch on Fontana Park. The mulch was placed at the park in conjunction with a work plan established by the Parks Department and the Martin-Fontana Park Association (MFPA). The mulch is being used to cover the skinned areas for weed reduction and erosion control efforts

With a quick response the City assembled a crew to haul away the mulch piles and ultimately remove the insect nuisance. This action was met with much dismay and many neighbors wanting to know what the reasoning was behind the mulch removal.

Current Status:

On Monday, Nov 28th, Park Facility Supervisor Don Zonic met on site with all the concerned parties including staff from Councilmember Pyle’s office. A coordinated effort was agreed to by all parties on spreading the chip and sharpening the focus on the project. Special attention was paid to the reporting party’s residence to eradicate the insects in the backyard and on the fence.

Mr. Zonic coordinated the arrival of the Bay Area Tree Service (BATS) who originally brought the mulch to the park. They returned with a loader to spread the remaining mulch which achieved the goal of the project, and removed the insect nuisance. All parties were satisfied with the immediate outcome.

Next Steps:

Staff will continue to work closely with (BATS) to ensure all mulch brought to the park is of good quality and is spread in a timely manner and not against adjoining private property.

Park staff will continue working closely with the MFPA on the re-vegetation project including planting and maintenance of native plants. The weed abatement efforts will continue to be a top priority using mulch and other non-toxic methods.

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