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The Los Angeles river - a sad story

Making It Grow Radio Minute
SC Public Radio

Daughter Lill called me from Los Angeles recently. It had been raining and raining and she donned a raincoat as she was feeling house bound. She walked down to the Los Angeles River. This river is in a broad, concrete culvert and when we saw it at Christmas while visiting it was just a small stream of water.

When Lill saw it recently, it was a raging torrent. We know from our storm water experts, that when water flows over soil, many of the pollutants can be removed and microbes in the ground can safely decompose them. In the case of the Los Angeles River, everything goes right into the Pacific Ocean. Lill, who has become a surfer, said that after even a normal rain event you can’t surf for two days as the ocean itself becomes so polluted.

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Amanda McNulty is a Clemson University Extension Horticulture agent and the host of South Carolina ETV’s Making It Grow! gardening program. She studied horticulture at Clemson University as a non-traditional student. “I’m so fortunate that my early attempts at getting a degree got side tracked as I’m a lot better at getting dirty in the garden than practicing diplomacy!” McNulty also studied at South Carolina State University and earned a graduate degree in teaching there.