Excess fertilizers can be washed into the stormwater system, loading our waterways with nitrogen and phosphorous. Just one pound of fertilizer over-application on the average lawn can equate to 34.2 lbs. of excess algae growth in streams and lakes. That’s the equivalent of one ton for every 60 homes! Runoff from excessive watering can also carry fertilizer and other pollutants into the stormwater system.
| Consider the following actions at home:
|Test your soil to determine the correct application rates, over-fertilizing negatively impacts your lawn and water quality.
|Apply fertilizer when it is dry or there is little precipitation expected to prevent excess runoff.
|In Colorado, you might need to fertilize lawns twice per year. If so, late spring and early fall are the best times to do it.
|Fertilizing in the early fall promotes healthy root systems – leading to stronger, more resilient lawns and plants.
|Consider using slow-release fertilizers with water-insoluble or slowly soluble nutrients.
|Planting species that are native to the region can decrease the amount of water and fertilizer needed.
|Sweep up any spills or over spray of fertilizers on impervious surfaces.
|Adjust your sprinkler systems based on weather and repair leaks to reduce runoff.
|Hand-pull weeds when possible.