In accordance with Sarasota and Manatee County urban fertilizer ordinances, the Sarasota Bay Estuary Program (SBEP)reminds residents not to use fertilizer products containing nitrogen and phosphorus from June 1 through September 30. Rainwater washes excess fertilizer into storm drains, which results in nitrogen and phosphorus being transported into Sarasota Bay through tributaries and storm drains. These chemicals can fuel excessive growth of algae, which smothers natural vegetation and feeds invasive weeds.
The SBEP and local county professionals offer additional tips for Bay-friendly living. The include using rain barrels to conserve water for landscaping, not over watering lawns and plants, planting Florida native plants, and keeping all fertilizers at least 10 feet away from the edge of any water body. Learn more by visiting befloridian.org or sarasotabay.org. You can also visit the Sarasota County website scgov.net and do a search on the word “fertilizer.”
The Sarasota Bay Estuary Program is dedicated to restoring the area's greatest natural asset – Sarasota Bay. Its unique program strives to improve water quality, increase habitat and enhance the natural resources of the area for use and enjoyment by the public. Sarasota Bay is one of 28 protected estuaries in the U.S. The SBEP was founded in 1989 and its partners include Sarasota County, Manatee County, City of Sarasota, City of Bradenton, Town of Longboat Key, Southwest Florida Water Management District, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
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