Reduce Stormwater Runoff

Your landscape is one part of a large system involved with watersheds. Watersheds are large areas that drain into common lakes, rivers or oceans. Nature knows no property lines. A rainstorm or excessive irrigation can wash pesticides and fertilizers from your landscape and pollute your neighbor’s lawn and local waterways.

In the Spotlight:

Reduce Runoff Action Checklist:

  1. Mow lawns to a height suggested by Clemson University for your specific lawn. Use the higher recommended height when the lawn is under stress, such as during times of drought and very high temperatures.
  2. Sweep grass clippings, fertilizer and soil from driveways and streets back onto the lawn. 
  3. Remove trash from street gutters so it will not get washed into storm drains.
  4. Use mulch, permeable pavers, flagstone, gravel, or other porous surfaces for walkways, patios and drives.
  5. Do your duty and pick up after pets. Properly dispose of waste in the trash. This will help reduce bacteria and nutrient pollution entering storm drain systems, ditches and local waterways.
  6. Create an at-home kit for chemical spills and leaks. Empty containers, or those filled with cat litter or absorbent materials, should be properly disposed of and not put out at the curb. More information on this can be found at the Carolina Clear website.

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Did you know?

As yard debris decomposes, nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus are released into the water. This causes algae blooms, which are unsightly and can kill fish. Recycling your yard debris makes up part of a lawn care plan designed to produce a healthy yard with savings in time, energy, and money. At the same time, this yard care plan will benefit your community and the environment.

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Tip:

Do your doody, pick up after your pet! Pet waste is full of bacteria, viruses, and parasites. When pet waste is left on the ground, all of the bacteria and viruses in that pet waste are picked up by rainwater and washed down the storm drain into surrounding waterways. This makes waterways unsafe for humans due to high bacteria levels.

Additional Resources:

Homeowners – Preventing Stormwater Pollution

H2Ownership Fact Sheets

South Carolina Coast-A-Syst

Carolina Yards Scorecard