Community outreach and public information, play a vital role in the success of the Stormwater Program. Providing knowledge to our residents, businesses and visitors to the pristine environment here in Palm Bay fostering stewardship in preserving these assets. Since the stormwater collected in the streets and catch basins flow untreated to our waterways, it is vital to prevent pollution at the source. Waterways become polluted when pollutants such as used motor oil, antifreeze, paints, fertilizers, pet waste, soapy water, and pesticides, are washed into the storm drains. It is the number one source of pollution in our nation’s urban waters today. Storm drains were designed to collect only rain and clean water runoff to prevent flooding during storms.
Never dispose of leaves, grass clippings, trash, oil, paint, chlorinated (pool) water, or any other type of pollutant into the gutters or street catch basins. Rake the leaves, dirt, and debris from the gutter in front of your home to help prevent clogs that can lead to flooding. Never place filters or screens in front of storm drains as this can lead to clogs and increased flooding.
The Stormwater Program offers volunteer opportunities, educational material, videos, informational press releases, and a variety of tips to residents and businesses for preventing pollution at the source.
Fertilizer Ordinance Information
So what does the Fertilizer Ordinance, Ordinance 2014-16 mean to you? Here is the simplified version:
- Rainy season ban from June 1 - September 30 for fertilizer containing nitrogen and phosphorus applied to turf grass (established lawns); you can still apply fertilizers to your lawns that do not contain nitrogen or phosphorus during this period and you may continue to apply specialty fertilizer to your gardens, flowers, etc. as necessary.
- No fertilizer containing phosphorus is allowed without a soil or tissue test which results indicate the need (must have a certified report from IFAS), phosphorus is abundant in most soils so adding is not needed.
- When applying fertilizer with nitrogen, make sure the total content contains at least 50% slow release, see flyer on how to calculate whether the guaranteed analysis provides for this amount.
- Fertilizer free zone requires, at a minimum, prohibiting applying fertilizer within 10 feet of all bodies of water, no exceptions, this includes ponds, canals, ditches, creek and river.
- Prohibits depositing grass clippings and fertilizer on any impervious surface (concrete, asphalt, and water bodies), as plants start to break down they will actually leach nutrients (nitrogen and phosphorus).
- Prohibits fertilizing on days when a heavy rain is expected, if the ground is saturated, or during a flood watch, tropical storm, or hurricane watch or warning.
- Establishes a voluntary low maintenance zone within 10' of all water bodies, recommend allowing vegetation that doesn’t require fertilizer to grow in these areas.
- Requires professionals and institutional applicators to have training. It’s called Green Industry Best Management Practice (GIBMP) certification and your lawn fertilizer caretakers are required by Florida State Statute to have this certification! Verify with your professional that they have this certification. Click here for more information.
- Establishes penalties for non-compliance, two warnings before fines are imposed.
Tips for Businesses
Tips for Residents
Articles Of Interest
Click here to view the Turkey Creek Water Atlas.
Rain Garden Manual [PDF]: a complete how to manual for installing a Rain Garden in your yard!
Fish Kills [PDF] what are they, how they happen and you can do to prevent them.
Recycling [PDF] tips and information for everyone!
Pesticide and Fertilizer Use [PDF]: Your lawn probably covers a small piece of land. Combined with other homeowners, however, the environmental contamination can present a major problem!
Pet Waste [PDF]: It isn’t just water quality that can suffer.......