OYEZ, OYEZ, OYEZ!
The 2021 Washington Grove Annual Town Meeting to be held electronically
on Saturday May 8th at 8:00 p.m.
Special Rules of Order (supplementing Robert’s Rules of Order) will be used to conduct the meeting, for recognizing those wishing to be heard, and to establish the presence of the required quorum of 50 qualified town voters.
How to attend the Town Meeting: The 2021 Annual Town Meeting will be convened electronically by Zoom videoconferencing via the internet, or by dial-in, similar to meetings conducted in Town for over a year.
PLEASE NOTE THESE ACCESS INSTRUCTIONS (subject to change via Grove Alert):
- Internet access: Use Zoom videoconferencing for audio or audio/video at this link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84578522352?pwd=NEVGbEluZm01em1OZkQrMVFzVEJzUT09
- Use Telephone dial-in for audio only: 301 715 8592 and Meeting ID 845 7852 2352, passcode 051951
- All participants should access the meeting early – between 7:30 and 7:50.
- You will enter into a Waiting Room to check your qualified voter status.
- A Cohost will ask you to identify yourself and your Grove address, and will confirm your voting status.
- You will then be transfered into the meeting.
Everyone is encouraged to become familiar with the Zoom remote access software and process from smart devices, or with Dial-in from a not-so-smart device/phone.
Practice Sessions: If in doubt about connecting, YOU SHOULD SCHEDULE A PRACTICE SESSION (~10’-20’). Contact either John Compton at [email protected] or 240-432-5700, or Charlie Challstrom at [email protected] or 301-926-4498
We are conducting the annual municipal election via our absentee and emergency ballot provisions that allow ballots to be obtained up until what would be the opening of polls at 4:00 on May 8, and to be submitted up until 7:00 pm May 8. You need only complete and drop off at the Town Office an Absentee Ballot Application attached to this Bulletin.. See the Annual Town Election article below for further information.
Town Council News…
Next meeting: Monday, May 17, 2021; 7:30pm
The public is invited to attend this virtual meeting via ZOOM at:
Or Dial-in to 301-715-8592
Meeting ID: 297 850 640
Actions at the April Meeting Included:
- Introduction of Ordinance 2021-05; Adopting the Town Budget for the Fiscal Year July 1, 2021, Through June 30, 2022, and Levying an Ad Valorem Tax on All Assessable Property Within the Town of Washington Grove, Maryland.
- Adoption of Resolution 2021-06; To Provide for Convening the 2021 Annual Town Meeting Electronically, and Provide Notice Electronically, and Establish Special Rules of Order For Communication by Electronic Means, and Establish Other Rules to Respond to Technical or Practical Difficulties, and Adopt the Proposed Budget as a Provisional Budget.
- Introduction Ordinance of 2021-07; Setting Fees and Expiration of Archeological Permits, and Retitling of Article I.
- Approved Mayor’s Reappointment of Margaret Cavenagh, David Hix, and Nick Suzich to the Board of Supervisors of Elections (March 2021 – February 2023).
- Authorized issuing an RFP for road work at the intersection of McCauley and Washington Grove Lane, and for installation of a drainage pipe under Chestnut Road at Oak Street and under Center Street at Hickory Road
Notice of Public Hearing on Budget Ordinance
The Mayor and Town Council will hold an electronic public hearing on Monday, May 17, 2021 at 7:30 pm by Zoom to hear public comment on the following ordinance:
- Ordinance 2021-05;. Adopting the Town Budget for the Fiscal Year July 1, 2021, Through June 30, 2022, and Levying an Ad Valorem Tax on All Assessable Property Within the Town of Washington Grove MD.
Action on this ordinance would comply with State requirements to adopt the budget via an ordinance and follow up presentation and voting on the budget at the Town Meeting.
Notice of Public Hearing
The Mayor and Town Council will hold an electronic public hearing on Monday, May 17, 2021 at 7:30 pm by Zoom to hear testimony on the following ordinance:
- Ordinance 2021-07; Setting Fees and Expiration of Archeological Permits and Retitling of Article I.
To access and participate, please use the ZOOM information above for the Town Council Meeting.
Testimony may also be mailed or emailed. Copies of either proposed ordinance are available for inspection on the Town website; www.washingtongrovemd.org, or upon request to the Town Clerk (phone 301-926-2256); or e-mail to [email protected] or by mail to P.O. Box 216 Washington Grove, MD 20880.
Maryland State Income Tax
Washington Grove Subdivision Code 1612: Every year the Town of Washington Grove receives a portion of the Maryland State income tax paid by Town residents. Because most residents do not have mail delivered to street addresses, this presents a challenge for the State Comptroller’s office when attributing the taxes collected to Washington Grove. Therefore it is critical for all Washington Grove residents (including renters) to designate subdivision “1612” and “Washington Grove” as their physical address on the MD tax form. For those filing electronically or using software, there should be a drop-down menu to select Washington Grove. Please share this information with your renters and your tax preparer if appropriate. This DOES NOT increase your taxes but DOES help ensure the Town receives its proper share of income tax revenue. Thanks for your help! Questions, call Treasurer Mary Challstrom at 301-926-4498.
Annual Town Elections
Election Day is Saturday, May 8. Like last year, there will be no in-person voting available. Eligible residents are encouraged to cast votes through the procedure used in 2020. Your Ballot will be provided after you submit the Application for Absentee Ballot. All details, as well as the ballot request form, are available on the Town website; click on “Government,” then click on “Elections.” Eligible voters are those registered to vote in Montgomery County at a Town address.
All ballots must be returned to the Town Office by 7:00 PM on May 8.
You can check your current voter registration by:
Clicking this link: http://voterservices.elections.maryland.gov/VoterSearch
Sending a Text message: text “Check” to 77788
Questions may be directed to [email protected] or to another member of the Board of Supervisors of Elections (Margo Cavenagh, Dave Hix)
Nominees for office:
- Mayor (one year-term): John Compton
- Council (two three year-terms):Christine Dibble, Audrey Maskery, Barbara Raimondo
All of us thank those willing to run and serve the Town in this manner. All ballots must be returned to the Town Office by 7:00 PM on May 8. Results announced at that evening’s second annual virtual Town Meeting.
Planning Commission News…
Next meeting: Wed. May 5, 2021; 7:30 p.m. The public is invited to attend this virtual meeting via ZOOM. As part of the Town’s response to the COVID-19 crisis, this Planning Commission Meeting will be conducted online, rather than in person.
Residents and the public may access using Meeting ID: 781 347 688
By dialing in to: 301-715-8592 and following the audio instructions.
OR by joining the Zoom videoconference at: https://zoom.us/j/781347688
Building Permit Submission Deadline
The deadline to submit a building permit application for approval by the Planning Commission and review by the Historic Preservation Commission is the 2nd Wednesday of the month prior to the PC meeting at which the permit will be reviewed (this will be in the following month). This timing ensures the HPC will be able to complete a formal review before the PC meeting as this review is required for the PC to approve the permit in a timely fashion. If you are considering any renovation or building project at your house, be sure to get a copy of the procedures to apply for a Town Building Permit which will help you through the Town’s process.
Permits Up for Approval in May: None
2021 Comprehensive Plan Work Session
The 2021 Comprehensive Plan draft versions are available on the Comprehensive Plan page of the Town website. The Agenda will be posted on the Town web site home page.
Work Session Notice: Wednesday May 19 at 7:30 pm. REMOTE ACCESS ONLY
As part of the Town’s response to the COVID-19 crisis, this Comprehensive Plan Work Session will be conducted online, rather than in person. The agenda will be posted at the Town office and on the Town web site the week before the meeting.
Work Session Access:
Residents and the public may access using Meeting ID: 781 347 688
By dialing in to: 301-715-8592 and following the audio instructions.
OR by joining the Zoom videoconference at: https://zoom.us/j/781347688
Please make sure your name is associated with your zoom device in order to be admitted from the Waiting Room.
Historic Preservation Commission News…
Next meeting: Tuesday, May 18, 2021; 7:30 p.m.
The public is invited to attend this virtual meeting via ZOOM. For a copy of the Agenda, email Chairman Bob Booher ([email protected]).
Join Zoom Meeting:
Meeting ID: 344 019 9688
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Summary Statement of Significance for the Washington Grove Historic District’s Nomination to the National Register
The National Register of Historic Places is maintained and expanded by the National Park Service on behalf of the Secretary of the Interior. Properties included in the Register represent major patterns of shared local, state, and national experience.
To guide the selection of properties included in the National Register, the National Park Service has developed the National Register Criteria for Evaluation by which every property nominated to the National Register is judged. Each nomination must provide a detailed physical description of the property and justify why it is significant historically with regard either to local, state, or national history.
The four criteria are:
- Criterion A – “Event”, the property contributes to a major pattern of American history.
- Criterion B – “Person”, the property is associated with significant people of the American past.
- Criterion C – “Design/Construction”, concerns the distinctive characteristics of a building by its architecture and construction, including having great artistic value or being the work of a master.
- Criterion D – “Information potential”, is satisfied if the property has yielded or may be likely to yield information important to prehistory or history.
- The National Register Nomination document prepared by Robinson & Associates, Inc., for the Washington Grove Historic District includes a 2-page “Summary Statement of Significance” explaining how our Historic District meets the requirements of National Register Criterion A and Criterion C. The summary statement is reproduced below.
Summary Statement of Significance
National Register Criterion A
Social History: The Washington Grove Historic District is significant at the state level under National Register Criterion A in the area of social history as an important example of a Methodist camp meeting founded at the height of the religious resort period of the American camp meeting movement and as a successful regional independent assembly Chautauqua. During the religious resort period, camp meetings were founded across the country and in Maryland as an alternative to the secular summer resorts that were gaining popularity among the middle and upper middle classes during the second half of the nineteenth century. Washington Grove represented the trend, drawing thousands from the Washington area to its annual outdoor revival while attracting a stable base of summer residents. Emblematic of the Chautauqua movement’s long-running connection to American Methodism and camp meetings, Washington Grove established an independent assembly Chautauqua in 1902, which ushered in a new chapter of community growth and revitalization just as interest and support for camp meetings had begun to falter. The town’s buildings, sites, and structures represent a continuity of the activities and traditions established in the camp meeting and Chautauqua periods that are firmly supported by residents today.
Community Planning and Development: The Washington Grove Historic District is significant at the local level under National Register Criterion A in the area of community planning and development for its association with late nineteenth/early twentieth-century suburban migration from Washington, D.C., to Montgomery County via the Metropolitan Branch of the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad. Planned as both an annual camp meeting site and a religious summer resort to serve Washington-area Methodists, Washington Grove evolved into a successful year-round community that influenced similar developments along the railroad corridor. Washington Grove is also locally significant in the area of community planning and development for its involvement in and influence on the suburbanization of Montgomery County during the post-World War II period. Washington Grove is an independent municipality whose town meeting tradition is a direct successor of the annual stockholders meeting of the Washington Grove Camp Meeting Association. It is one of only seven municipalities in Montgomery County with independent planning and zoning authority. In the face of unprecedented regional growth and overreaching development that threatened the social and physical fabric of established communities in the greater Washington, D.C., area, Washington Grove under home rule successfully promoted responsible growth and compatible new design while managing and protecting the physical manifestations of its camp meeting heritage.
National Register Criterion C
Architecture: The Washington Grove Historic District is significant at the local level under National Register Criterion C in the area of architecture. Washington Grove possesses a significant collection of residential buildings that embody the built tradition of the American camp meeting movement and reflect important national trends in late nineteenth- and twentieth-century American domestic architecture. Of particular note is the high concentration of Carpenter Gothic cottages. These architecturally distinctive houses feature peaked, front-gable roofs and double doors that evoke the shape and massing of the canvas structures that initially made up the community and vividly express the Carpenter Gothic style using highly ornamental scroll sawn woodwork, bracketed pendants, decorative dressings over or around windows and doors, and turned or chamfered porch posts. Built using natural materials, the cottages reflect the rustic setting of Washington Grove and the importance of nature to the interpretation of the camp meeting as a place apart. Originally constructed as summer residences, these cottages were converted into year-round homes and adapted to modern living with each passing generation. The result is an architecture of accretions that gives Washington Grove’s camp meeting cottages a highly eclectic and distinct character. The persistence of vernacular forms through the early twentieth century represents a continuity with the past, and the introduction of revivalist styles adds to the architectural diversity of the district. The new domestic forms and styles introduced in the modern era embody a local manifestation of national trends in residential design. In their simplicity of form, open plans, and affordability, these houses represent a continuity in design from the camp meeting era. Across the continuum of Washington Grove’s residential buildings, there is an adherence to standard forms that have been altered through individual elaboration, renovations, and additions to meet the changing needs of homeowners.
Community Planning and Development: The Washington Grove Historic District is locally significant under National Register Criterion C as a notable expression of two important nineteenth-century trends in community planning and development. The spatial organization of the town combines a popular nineteenth-century camp meeting form – the wheel plan – with a residential grid emblematic of railroad and streetcar suburbs across the United States. Washington Grove’s physical plan continues to evoke the historic delineations of the camp meeting era Tent Department, characterized by the Circle and the radiating avenues and interstitial alleys that surround it, and the Cottage Department, which features a system of alternating avenues for pedestrian use and roads for vehicular use. This circulation system served to reinforce the sylvan character of the landscape and improve the safety and appearance of the campgrounds, and it represents an early precursor of the Radburn scheme of community planning. In addition, the balance and combination of residential divisions, open spaces for assembly and recreation, and forested preserves has been a fundamental attribute of Washington Grove since its founding and remains intact today.
Landscape Architecture: The Washington Grove Historic District is locally significant under landscape architecture as a representation of the vernacular tradition of American camp meeting planning and design. Although the site is not the work of a professional designer, gardener, or horticulturalist, the spatial organization, vegetation, circulation networks, and other physical characteristics of the landscape embody the qualities and associations of late nineteen-century Methodist campgrounds. Washington Grove’s first permanent shelter was its tree canopy, and before the construction of the tabernacle, a clearing in the woods was the setting for worship. The landscape provided a natural and healthy, inspirational and insular setting for religious activities and evolved through the twentieth century to support the residential, recreational, and social customs of a year-round community while maintaining its essential form and character.
Period of Significance
The period of significance for the Washington Grove Historic District spans the years 1873 to 1969. This period begins with the establishment of the Washington Grove Camp Meeting and ends in 1969 (50 years before the present). During this period, Washington Grove achieved its design significance in the areas of architecture, community planning and development, and landscape architecture as a town founded on camp meeting principles that evolved to incorporate a range of vernacular and stylistic design trends. This period encompasses the formation and development of Washington Grove as a religious camp meeting, its location as an independent Chautauqua assembly, municipal organization, and the events and activities that contribute to its significance within the context of post-World War II planning and development in Montgomery County.
Racial Equity Committee…
Next meeting: Sunday, May 16, 2021; 2:00 p.m.
All are welcome! Folks who would like to attend should email [email protected] to get the Zoom link. And more information on how to join the committee, our goals, past meeting minutes, and historical resources can be found here: https://linktr.ee/RacialEquityGrover.
Recreation Committee News…
Next Meeting: Wednesday, 26, 2021, 7:30 pm. The public is invited to attend this virtual meeting via ZOOM. To join the Zoom Videoconference:
Meeting ID: 539 231 5882
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Dial by your location
+1 301 715 8592 US (Washington DC)
Woods Committee News…
Next meeting: Monday, May 3, 2021; 7:30 p.m. via Zoom Video Conference.
Join Zoom Meeting
By Phone: 301 715 8592
Meeting ID: 861 3380 0629
Our meetings are regularly held on the first Monday of each month. The June meeting will be held on Monday, June 7.
The WC has been working to improve the walking trails and your experience in our forest preserves. We have created “timber turnpikes” made of packed soil and wood chips secured with tree limb edging on the wettest parts of several East Woods trails. We added brown gravel to the Maple Avenue Extended entrance to the East Woods to stabilize this wet trail section. Maple Avenue Extended deeper into the East Woods is still very wet. We will continue with this trail maintenance project in the near future. We hope these improvements will make your forest preserves experience safer and more enjoyable.
Each Spring the WC schedules a West Woods Cleanup Day but this year, because of the pandemic, we do not want people to congregate in work groups even for this worthwhile effort. However, several members of the Woods Committee, who are fully COVID-19 vaccinated, will meet in the Maple Lake parking lot on Saturday morning, May 1 at 10:00 AM. We welcome other volunteers as individuals or in small family groups to join us. Please use face masks and socially distance as necessary. Bring work gloves, insect repellent, and bottled water. Large trash bags will be provided. In addition to the satisfaction of having created a cleaner forest area, you will be rewarded with a sense of peace and beauty from your experience with nature.
Great news! The Spring ephemerals are in their glory in both East and West Woods. Tiny pink Virginia spring beauty plants carpet the forest floor. Jack in the pulpit is starting to sprout. Cherry trees and dogwoods continue to provide color. Black haw viburnum, with umbrella shaped clusters of white flowers, are everywhere. In the West Woods, spicebush is filling the understory. We hope you can enjoy a unique Spring experience in our East and West Woods.
Lake Committee News…
Next Meeting: Thursday, May 20, 2021, 7:30 pm
Via ZOOM Video Conference
By phone: 301 715 8592
Meeting ID: 850 2822 4870
Find your local number: https://us02web.zoom.us/u/kCErODdlH
Lake Opening Dates (Tentative): Memorial Day W-E May 29-31, then weekends until MCPS goes on vacation (June 15?), then 7 days a week until Labor Day. Lifeguard hours are from 12 noon to 6 PM.
Lake Committee Meetings:
Third Thursday of each month via Zoom until we can meet at the Town Hall. We need to plan for lifeguards, swim lessons, and making the lake even better for this summer. New members welcome and encouraged! Call John Hutchinson if you have any questions or suggestions.
Swim instructor needed for Maple Lake for the month of July to teach little kids. Pay is $19/hour. Call John Hutchinson for details.
Dog Park News…
Mutt Moms and Doggy Dads, Come Check Out the WG Dog Spot!
Hi Grovers, the WG Dog Spot (located adjacent to the Maple Lake parking lot) is ready for summertime doggo diversions and puppy play!
Please join us, with or without your pooch, the Sunday of Memorial Day weekend (that is, Sunday, May 30) at 4 pm, to take a quick tour of the Dog Spot and enjoy libations and mutt merriment. We’ll explain how to register your Rover so that you and your best canine buddy can use the Dog Spot anytime you please.
Woman’s Club News…
May is Flower Show time, so come take a Garden Stroll with us!
Once again, this year’s flower show will be a virtual exhibit of flowers, trees and gardens around Town. It will be released as a .pdf on May 23rd, to coincide with our first annual Garden Stroll.
The self-guided Garden Stroll, from 2-4 PM on Sunday, May 23rd, will be a chance to visit 6 of our neighbor’s gardens: the Samour-Harmon’s (333 McCauley Street) , the Mroczka’s (107 Grove Road), the Henninger’s (113 Grove Road), The Appleby’s (112 Chestnut Road.), the Robertson’s (315 Brown Street) and Kathy Evans’ (317 Brown Street). Maps will be provided, so you can start wherever you want, and proceed at your leisure. We plan to have camera spots for taking selfies and taking pictures of the gardens is encouraged, so don’t forget to bring your cameras ??.
There’s a flyer included in this bulletin for you to hang as a reminder of this special event, and updates will be sent as the time grows closer.
The Woman’s Club has Become Inclusive!
We are delighted to welcome several men as new members of our Club! We hope even more of you will join us in our outreach to the communities around us.
We’re Helping Out Where SNAP Leaves Off
As the desperate needs of those around us continue, we are collecting some of the much-needed items that SNAP (formerly Food Stamps) doesn’t pay for. Donations are appreciated, or if you would rather give us a check for please note that it’s for SNAP Plus.
- Similac – especially the blue boxes of powder
- Pedialyte – any flavor
- Diapers – sizes 3 and up
- Diaper wipes
- Toilet paper
- Feminine hygiene products
Tots to Teens…Kids in Need of Underwear
Again this spring, the County is reaching out to us to help them make sure that tots to teens, boys and girls, the least fortuante of the children have underwear. Over the years, we have developed resources to purchasing these and ensuring that we are providing for each group, so more than any other project, we ask for monetary donations to help in providing these needed items. Checks for this project should be noted for Kids Underwear.
Where to Drop Off Your Donations
Monetary donations should be made out to the Woman’s Club with a notation in the Memo line if you want it to go towards a specific project. All donations can be dropped off either in the boxes on the Clubhouse porch or in the painted can on Wendy Weisbard’s porch at 119 Grove Road.
Lighting Committee News…
Next Meeting: Wednesday, May 26th at 7:30pm, 2021 via ZOOM Video Conferencing. We will continue to meet on the 4th Wednesday of every month. All are welcome to attend!
PEPCO has recently filed a major tariff that could greatly affect the lighting in TWG. We have been in discussion with both Maryland Public Service Commission (MDPSC) and Pepco concerning their new multi-year plan.
Meeting ID: 838 9959 0964
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Questions, ideas or concerns please contact Virginia Quesada at:
301 706-7933 cell. [email protected] Or Robert N. Johnson [email protected]
Climate Action News…Sustainability Group
Next meeting: Tuesday, May 25, 2021, 7:30 PM
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 344 019 9688
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Dial by your location
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What’s Your Carbon Footprint and Why Does it Matter?
Your carbon footprint is your total output of greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs). When we drive and travel, when we heat our homes with oil or gas (or with electricity generated by fossil fuels such as coal, oil, and gas), and even when we purchase goods that are farmed, manufactured or shipped, GHGs (predominately CO2) are emitted.
GHGs have increased steadily since the preindustrial era, due almost entirely to human activity. As atmospheric CO2 rises, it causes more heat to be trapped in the atmosphere (“greenhouse effect”), raising global temperatures, which fuels climate change. Scientists predict that rising global temperature will produce more frequent extreme weather events (e.g., heat waves, hurricanes). (https://www.epa.gov/climate-indicators/weather-climate)
Estimate Your Household’s Carbon Footprint
There are many online calculators to help you estimate your carbon footprint and learn how to reduce it. They vary in the areas they address, their level of detail and assumptions. Some emphasize household energy and auto transportation, while others include diet, air travel and shopping habits. Thus, you will likely see differences in total carbon footprints, but compare your results to the average results.
For a start, try this carbon calculator from the Nature Conservancy: https://www.nature.org/en-us/get-involved/how-to-help/carbon-footprint-calculator
If you want to dig deeper into this topic, do a web search for “carbon footprint calculators” and you will see other options.
There are also calculators for kids, like this one from EnergyStar: https://www.energystar.gov/ia/products/globalwarming/downloads/GoGreen_Activities%20508_compliant_small.pdf
How Can You Visualize the Impact and Magnitude of CO2 Emissions?
The results of carbon footprint calculators are typically expressed in pounds, tons (2000 pounds), or metric tons (2204 pounds) of CO2. It may be helpful to think about a practical implication of carbon emissions. For example, a 2016 study in Science reported that for each metric ton of carbon dioxide emitted anywhere on earth, three square meters (32.3 square feet) of Arctic summer sea ice are lost. https://science.sciencemag.org/content/354/6313/747.long
Do you want to envision a metric ton of carbon dioxide gas? See the illustrations of metric tons of CO2 as 3-D shapes in familiar settings at https://www.conservationmagazine.org/2013/06/visualizing-carbon
Join the Sustainability Group to learn about ways you can reduce your carbon footprint and how we can work together to reduce the whole town’s carbon emissions.
Emergency Preparedness Committee News…
Next Meeting: Thursday, May 27, 2021 at 7:30 p.m.
Join the Zoom meeting by videoconference:
By Phone: 301 715 8592
Meeting ID: 815 0307 1226
Find your local number: https://us02web.zoom.us/u/kc3ybUj6tA
We are actively seeking new committee members! One committee goal is to promote a shared sense of preparedness, vigilance, and resilience to help strengthen our community. We welcome your input and ideas on how to achieve this and any other goals related to preparedness and safety. Please join us at our next meeting.
Border Committee News…
Next Meeting: Thursday, May 13, 2021; 7:30 p.m. Via ZOOM Videoconference. This Committee meets the second Thursday of each month. All are welcome. Contact Peter Nagrod ([email protected]) for information on how to join the meeting.
BULK TRASH COLLECTION SCHEDULED!
Potomac Disposal will do a bulk trash pickup on Saturday, June 26, 2021.
Materials may include furniture, appliances (nothing with freon like air conditioning units), rugs, large toys, small auto parts, etc.
Material may NOT include construction by-products from your renovation projects, large automotive parts or tires. Items should not contain gasoline or motor oil. Please keep your metal separate from the rest of your items.
ITEMS SHOULD BE PLACED “CURBSIDE” BY 7:00 AM
Reminder From the Washington Grove Post Office
Please remember to put your PO Box number on all your correspondence and packages. Not doing so could slow down delivery.
Forestry & Beautification News…
Next Meeting: May 12, 2021, 7:30 p.m. via ZOOM Video Conference
Isn’t spring beautiful? Wonderful invitation to get out for a walk!
At our next meeting, we will be planning for the spring tree planting. We’d love to have you join us! If you can’t make the meeting but have a suggestion for where a new tree is needed, please contact F&B Chair Georgette Cole ([email protected]) or our Council Liaison Gray Yachup ([email protected]).
After 17 years awaiting their big moment, a few million of Washington Grove’s longtime residents will shortly reveal themselves. Our very own periodical cicadas last visited us with gusto in 2004. The reappearance on schedule of what is known as the brood X (pronounced 10) periodicals suggests a certain stability in our local environment. They are not locusts, which are grasshoppers, and they are not the annual dog day cicadas that are active every August. And cicadas are not dangerous: They do not sting, bite, or carry diseases. Neither do they eat our vegetation or gardens. They are, however, annoying, alighting on our clothes, hair, windshields, and especially on our trees. Perhaps you recall their head splitting mating sounds? Well, starting in a couple of weeks and lasting another four weeks, we get to experience it all again.
Peak emergence of cicada nymphs starts around mid-May. During the prior month, nymphs burrow up to the soil surface in preparation for that moment. Right now, they can be found several inches underground. An indication that cicada nymphs are on the move are observations of “something” digging up lawns. Cicadas are good eating for many animals (and some people), and some animals are adept at sensing the cicadas (food) in the soil. These are likely raccoons, skunks, or other soil foraging beasts having a cicada feast. By now, ~1/2” diameter holes have appeared in the ground under trees, leaf litter, and pavers (see photo of a cicada hole taken in Washington Grove on April 17th). Some holes are covered with mud turrets (mounds) while cicada nymphs wait for the soil temperature to reach 64 °F, at which time they will leave the ground with optimal speed. A few hours later, the mature cicada takes flight or climbs the nearest tree. That loud noise we will grow so tired of over the next month? It comes from the males perched in trees, thrumming their hollow abdomens to intensify their love songs.
Periodical cicadas have sucking mouthparts and feed on the xylem fluid of trees (nymphs on roots, adults on tree branches), but this feeding is not known to cause significant damage. However, woody trees and shrubs can be damaged when cicadas oviposit (lay eggs) into branches. Branches preferred by cicadas for oviposition are approximately the diameter of a pencil. The female cicada deposits eggs in slits that she has made in the outer ends of branches. Each slit, referred to as an egg nest, contains 20-30 eggs, and there can be numerous egg nests in a row on a branch. A single female can lay hundreds of eggs. The branch outward from the oviposition wound usually dies back and results in what is known as branch flagging. Because cicadas are so abundant, there is a lot of flagging. Newly hatched nymphs drop to the ground, where they will remain until nature calls in 2038.
What can be done to prevent cicada injury to small, young trees? First, if you had cicadas in 2004 it is likely you will have cicadas and cicada damage in 2021. Some protective measures may be more feasible than others. Although one of the first thoughts may be to treat trees with insecticides, several studies have shown that insecticides are not the best line of defense. Research demonstrated that insecticides applied to sapling Tilia (Lindens) were only about half as effective as mesh nets at preventing egg laying. To be effective, the netting mesh must not be larger than 1 cm (3/8”) in size. Whereas the time taken to enclose a sapling is a few minutes (see instructions at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X4vjivdnfMM), insecticide treatments have to be repeated every few days because cicadas are good fliers who will move back into sprayed areas shortly after treatment. More significantly, insecticides used against cicadas are indiscriminate killers of other insects, including pollinators and other beneficials. It may be best to wait until after the infestation, around mid-June, if you are considering planting new trees.
Regardless of their annoying behavior, remember that the appearance of our periodical cicadas is a wonder of nature. They are found nowhere else in the world outside of the eastern United States. Our local brood X is present throughout Maryland and Delaware, and south-central Pennsylvania. Inexplicably, it is also found in western Ohio, nearly all of Indiana, and parts of the southern Appalachian Mountains. When the cicadas appear, they offer wonderful opportunities for observing nature, right here in our own backyards.
Washington Grove’s Candidate Forum
Saturday, May 1, at 3:00 pm
Come to the annual Candidate Forum! Your neighbors who are candidates in the upcoming Town elections will introduce themselves and answer your questions.
The forum, via Zoom, is one week before the Town Meeting and the ballot deadline on May 8. It has been organized by an ad hoc group of residents in order to give voters an opportunity to better know the candidates.
The Zoom link for the event is https://zoom.us/j/781347688. To access the forum by telephone, dial 301-715-8592, and follow instructions to get to Meeting ID 781 347 688.
April Coming Events Calendar
(All meetings via ZOOM Conference)
May 2 » Film Society “Graduation” 7:30 pm ZOOM
May 3 » Woods Committee 7:30 pm ZOOM
May 5 » Planning Commission 7:30 pm ZOOM
May 8 » ANNUAL TOWN MEETING 7:30 pm ZOOM
May 8 » Election Day: Deadline for all Ballots7:00 pm
May 12 » Building Permit Submission Deadline
May 12 » Forestry & Beautification 7:30 pm ZOOM
May 13 » Border Committee 7:30 pm ZOON
May 16 » Racial Equity Committee 2:00 pm ZOOM
May 17 » Town Council Meeting 7:30 pm ZOOM
May 17 » Public Hearings 7:30 pm ZOOM
May 18 » Historic Preservation Commission 7:30 pm ZOOM
May 19 » Comprehensive Plan Work Session 7:30 pm ZOOM
May 20 » Lake Committee 7:30 pm ZOOM
May 26 » Recreation Committee 7:30 pm ZOOM
May 26 » Lighting Committee 7:30 pm ZOOM
May 27 » Emergency Preparedness & Safety 7:30 pm ZOOM