Keep Leaves out of Lakes

By National Gardening Association Editors


Lake Champlain International

Just as leaves and grass clippings can be used to create nutrient rich compost for your lawn or garden, this organic matter can also add lots of nutrients to nearby lakes and ponds. Carried via streams, rivers, and storm drains into lakes and ponds, the lawn debris breaks downs and releases nutrients that can then contribute to potentially toxic algae blooms. The solution is simple. When raking leaves and cleaning up other lawn debris this fall, be sure that this organic debris doesn't end up in your driveway or the road. Add it to your compost pile, take it to your town's yard waste collection site, or just make sure it's piled somewhere when it can't be carried by runoff into surface waters or storm drains. You might be surprised at how far rain water or snow melt can carry leaves and grass clippings. A little change can go a long way for clean water!

From our friends at Lake Champlain International, the water quality experts. More tips at

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