UACES Facebook Preventing Stormwater Pollution: Parks and Grounds Maintenance
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Preventing Stormwater Pollution: Parks and Grounds Maintenance

Employees who maintain our parks and landscaped areas can help reduce water pollution by following precautions in their daily activities:

  • plant selection
  • watering
  • debris management
  • soil management
  • pesticide and herbicide practices

Plant Selection

  • Use native or adapted perennial vegetation.

Often a misconception about native plants is that they are weedy and only used in a meadow or natural setting. Many great native perennials and shrubs are mainstays in gardens. Visit our native plants page for ideas.



  • Check soil moisture and water only when the top 4" to 5" of soil is dry.
  • Avoid runoff by adjusting watering time, direction and volume of spray heads.
  • Turn off sprinklers during rainy weather.
  • Install rain and freeze sensors on automated sprinkler systems.


Debris Management

  • DO NOT dispose of grass clippings, leaves, or other debris in the storm drain.
  • Remove accumulated litter and debris from storm drain inlets.
  • Mow grass as high as possible leaving clippings on the lawn.
  • Use composted leaves as a soil amendment or shred and add to flower beds as mulch.
  • Sweep paved surfaces or blow clippings and trimmings onto grass rather than hosing down.


Soil Management

  • Test soil to determine fertilizer needs.
  • Aerating and composting reduces fertilizer needs, improves drainage, and promotes root growth.
  • Limit soil erosion by planting vegetation on bare areas and using mulch or matting for landscaped areas.


Pesticide and Herbicide Practices

  • Follow safety, storage and disposal procedures for chemicals.
  • Follow label directions when mixing or applying chemicals.
  • Mix chemicals on an impervious surface away from storm drains.
  • DO NOT apply during windy conditions or if rain is predicted within 24 hours.
  • Report any suspected problems regarding chemical  applications.
  • Use landscaping chemicals only as needed.
  • Apply chemicals to the problem area only.
  • Carefully select the appropriate product for the problem.
  • Use non-toxic substitutes for chemicals when possible.