Gardening tips for wise use of your water resources

Implementing environmentally friendly gardening practices can avoid waste and help protect water quality.

Home garden and lawn care practices can have important positive or negative effects on the health of our rivers, streams, lakes and aquifers. You don’t even have to live on the water to make a big difference. Rain that falls on our gardens, lawns, driveways, roads and parking lots can wash into waterways and storm drains or leaches into ground water, carrying pollutant, including fertilizers, pesticides, animal waste, soil and petroleum products.

Whether starting a new landscape or maintaining a well-established one, implementing the following key environmentally friendly gardening practices will help you do your part to protect our natural resources. Plus, your garden and yard will demand less time and be healthier, attractive and more productive!

Right plant, right site

Efficient water use

Fertilize appropriately


Manage yard pests responsibly


Reduce storm water runoff

Protect the water front

For additional gardening information, call the MSU Extension Lawn and Garden Hotline at 1-888-MSUE-4MI (1-888-678-3464). You can also visit

Related resources on water use or drought: