The December windstorm that left thousands of people in northern Utah without power, closed schools, destroyed fences and downed hundreds of trees did not spare the USU Botanical Center and Ogden Botanical Garden. Eight trees were downed at the Ogden garden and the main building lost shingles and siding.
Most of the roof and a section of a wall were ripped off
during the December windstorm.
Davis County got the worst of the storm, with 102 mile-per-hour winds recorded in Centerville, just a few miles south of the USUBC. By the time the storm finally ended, the center had lost 10 trees and some fencing.
The greatest damage though was to the USUBC greenhouse where most of the roof and a section of the south-facing wall were ripped off. As the temperature quickly dropped in the open greenhouse, the staff worked quickly to move tender plant starts to a nearby building. While the plants are sheltered now, it is not an ideal environment for growing plants. And despite quickly turning off water to the greenhouse, staff members are still contending with broken pipes.
Wetland Discovery Point is powered by five solar panels that track the movement of the sun. The panels on their tall poles can be clearly seen from I-15, facing toward the sun every day. The panels were left turned in all directions, their bases loosened and some of them tipped at odd angles.
Solar panels at the Wetland Discovery Point were turned and tipped in wrong directions during the windstorm
And just as storm water from the surrounding community flows to the USUBC ponds, all kinds of debris that was blown from peoples' yards also ended up at the center.
Cleanup will continue in the coming months. The USUBC welcomes any volunteer efforts to assist in cleaning up the property. For more information about volunteering, please call (801) 593-8969. Repairs to the greenhouse will begin later this month with the goal of being completed in time to plant for this year's growing season and plant sales.