Make Changes at Home
Lawn Care Management
Keep grass clippings on your lawn: Grass clippings rapidly decompose, keeping moisture and nutrients on your lawn. Turf scientists studying grass and lawncare at the University of Connecticut have found that after a few years of leaving clippings on the lawn, fertilizer needs are cut by one-third to one-half.
Apply no (or less) fertilizer: Try using half of the amount of fertilizer recommended on the bag. If you like the way your lawn looks, use that amount. If not, apply a little more until you like it.
Apply at the right time: Lawns don’t take up nitrogen during hot summer months. If you use fertilizer, turf scientists recommend applying once around Labor Day. If you apply in the spring, do it around Mother’s Day.
Reduce lawn area requiring fertilizer: Replace grass and plants that require fertilizer and pesticides with native plants, ground covers or landscaping that don’t.
Capture stormwater: Keep lawn and garden fertilizers out of storm drains, streams and waterways by using rain gardens or grass swales that allow rain and snow melt to absorb into the ground.
Conserve water: Install high-efficiency appliances and fixtures in your home.
Inspect and maintain your septic system: Contract with a service provider to get your system pumped regularly and keep it working well. Failed systems can leak bacteria into drinking water. More info from Connecticut Department of Health
Upgrade Wastewater Technology: Where possible, connect your home to a sewage treatment plant that treats nitrogen. Contact your local public works department for more information.