Archive for February, 2016

Red Bug Slough Air Potato Roundup

February 28, 2016

Fun Day at Red Bug Slough!

A very fun day last Saturday at the Red Bug Slough Preserve!  Kids, dogs, hamburgers… what else could you ask for?  Darcy Young with Sarasota Bay Estuary Program and Jeff Weber of Sarasota County hosted a morning of cool fresh air and an unlimited supply of air potatoes!  We had a couple of hours of gathering the offending spuds and then the awards: largest potato, smallest potato, most unusual, and total pounds gathered.  There were couples, families, and kids groups from local schools and churches.  The roundup concluded with a cook out courtesy of Sarasota County (thanks for the veggie burgers, Jeff).

Dioscorea bulbifera (say what?)


Lesson learned: Don’t put these things in your yard trash!  There have been times when I have filled an entire  trash can with air potatoes and vines and I always put them out with the yard trash.  Big mistake!  They get mulched and can spread back into the environment.  They should be placed in a black plastic bag and put out with regular garbage.

Future Events

There are more events coming up…  contact Darcy and get on the SBEP email list.

Darcy Young
Sarasota Bay Estuary Program


February 23, 2016





Now that our sewer is decided…

February 22, 2016

…maybe there are other things we can do to improve the health of the Phillippi Creek Watershed.  Certainly the conversion from septic tanks to central sewer will improve the water quality of the Creek, but can we do more?  Turns out the answer is “YES, WE CAN”.

Sarasota County FYN Program

So, what is the Florida Friendly Yards and Neighborhood Program?  My wife Lynne and I set out to see if we could find out. A couple of weeks ago we visited the UF/IFAS Extension office at 6700 Clark Rd (Twin Lakes Park) and spoke with Wilma Holley, the Florida Friendly Landscaping Program Specialist for Sarasota County.  After a pleasant visit and a tour of the grounds we went home, checklist in hand, and started a survey of our yard.  Things looked pretty good: our roof runoff is directed into rain barrels or landscaping, we use leaf litter or melaleuca for mulch, we have a porous driveway and a compost bin. We didn’t find any “prohibited” plants, so we called Wilma and made an appointment for an on-site audit.

A pleasant experience

Wilma paid us a visit last week and gave our yard a thorough evaluation.  She is a wealth of knowledge and very pleasant to talk to. She gave us some good suggestions and pointed out some invasive plants that we did not know were invasive (“prohibited” plants would be a disqualification; we’ll work on the “invasive” ones).  The end result was a Silver level certification and Florida Friendly yard sign!



Contact the Extension Office

Download the checklist and do a quick survey… it may take very little to get your yard certified.  Remember the “Dump the Pumps” yard signs?  Let’s see how many Florida Friendly signs we can get in the neighborhood (I’ll bet no one will steal them in the middle of the night!)  You can reach Wilma at 941-861-9812 or at

Wilma Holley and Lynne Scarborough

Wilma Holley and Lynne Scarborough

P.S. Air Potato Round Up at Red Bug Slough

The Sarasota Bay Guardians are sponsoring an Air Potato Roundup at Red Bug Slough on Saturday Feb. 27 from 9AM until 12 noon.  You can sign up here.





February 6, 2016

PCSSRP Status Report (link)

N3 Residents

Property owners within the boundaries of Area N3 will receive an invitation to attend a public meeting/open house scheduled for February 24, 2016. In the “open house” forum, property owners will be able to speak with county staff, one-on-one, about any site specific concerns relative to their individual properties. Opportunities to discuss funding options, septic tank decommissioning and other pertinent topics, with county staff, are available.

The project is anticipated to advertise for construction bids in the Spring of 2016. Construction is slated to begin in the Fall of 2016, reaching Final Completion approximately nine months later, or Summer of 2017. This is a fairly conservative schedule; construction completion could be achieved as much as six months sooner than the Summer of 2017.

D3 Residents

Some residents in D3 have been attending the N3 public meetings to keep abreast of the potential change in technology in providing central sewer service to the various neighborhoods. Any resident is welcome to attend county-sponsored events, however, residents within D3 will be invited to attend a separate public meeting, specifically addressing the needs of D3. Staff anticipates a public meeting for D3 to be held in the Summer/Fall of 2016. Property owners will receive an invitation for this meeting in the Summer of 2016.