Take simple actions on your property to help protect water wherever you live.


Mow your grass to 3 inches, instead of 1 inch high this summer. You will not have to mow or water as often, as your grass will grow longer roots, and will generally be healthier.


Keep lawn clippings off the street. You will keep those clippings from washing through the stormdrains to the nearest lake or creek. The nutrients in those clippings cause unsightly algae growth in lakes. Point your mower so that clippings blow onto the lawn. Sweep up any clippings that land on the street.


As the leaves fall from the trees, rake or sweep them out of the street. The leaf-free streets keep your neighborhood looking tidy, and the leaves stay out of lakes and creeks. When leaves build up in lakes or creeks, they break down and use up oxygen in the water. Fish and plants have a hard time living in water with low oxygen levels.


Clean up the extra salt and sand. Salt on a dry, ice-free surface is not useful—it is pollution waiting to happen. Sand on a dry surface does not provide traction; it can actually lead to skidding and slipping. Sweep up these extra piles of sand and salt to keep them out of our lakes and creeks.

Did You Know? Nine Mile Creek has unhealthy levels of salt in it from winter use! Use less salt or none at all. Using Deicers with Care (PDF) »


Get rid of road gunk. Over the winter, trash, leaves, and sand build up into a mass of gunk, making the streets a mess. Get a bag and some gloves, and clean up the curbs and stormdrains. Round up your neighbors, and clean up all the stormdrains on the entire block. Not only will the neighborhood look better, but it will keep pollutants out of nearby bodies of water.