Do you want your yard to be a Florida Yard?

turf-grassIt is not about turfgrass anymore!!! Less grass is better. Be the cool homeowner by installing native plants in your yard. Every homeowner can Floridify their yard and reduce pollution runoff by following a few key guidelines.

1. Use Turfgrass Only Where Needed for Pets or Play Areas

– Use Florida friendly trees, shrubs and groundcovers to reduce turfgrass in your yard.
– Match the right plants to the right places in your yard.
– Expand your landscape beds and reduce the time spent mowing your yard.

2. Use Water Wisely

– Don’t water until you can see footprints in your lawn and the leaves of your plants are starting to curl.
– Don’t water when rain is expected or immediately after it rains.
– Place an inexpensive rain gauge in an open are so you can track the amount of rain falling on your yard and the amount of water used for irrigation.
– Supervise your sprinklers to make sure that the heads aren’t broken and that the water is spraying on your lawn and not the street.
– When you irrigate, it is better to give the landscape at least 1/2 to 3/4 inches of water so that turfgrass and plants put down deep roots.

3. Reduce or Eliminate Fertilizers

– Remember that there is a ban on use of fertilizer for turfgrass in ALL areas of Pinellas County between June 1 and September 30.
– When you fertilize your lawn, use a fertilizer with slow-release nitrogen and no phosphorous.
– Clean up fertilizer that lands on sidewalks, driveways or roadways. Blow it back on to your yard.
– Remember to keep fertilizer at least 10 feet away from surface water and the edge of a seawall.

4. Reduce or Eliminate Pesticides

– The No. 1 rule for pest control is to know what insects are infiltrating your territory before you start applying pesticides.
– Many insects in Florida are helpful, such as ladybugs and spiders.
– There are a variety of non-toxic horticultural soaps and sprays that keep harmful plant insects under control without using poison.

Check out the following web site for more information, including Florida Friendly Products and Landscape Services: http://befloridian.org/floridifying/ City staff thanks every resident for their support in reducing pollution to the Bay.

Information from the City of St. Pete Beach.

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