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Education: Landscaping for Clean Water

Many people do not realize that the storm sewer inlets on their streets and backyards go directly to lakes, ponds, wetlands and streams without being treated. In addition, developed areas typically have more impervious surfaces (rooftops, driveways, and compacted lawns) meaning more water is running off the surface rather than soaking into the ground. Pollutants such as fertilizers, pesticides, sediment, or trash that can be conveyed by storm water runoff end up in our water bodies.

Several practices can diminish the effects of excess runoff and associated pollutants. Native Gardens, rain gardens, and shoreline stabilizations can help water soak in and filter storm water runoff. Landscaping for Clean Water Workshops make it easy for residents interested in doing their part to protect water quality to plan, purchase and plant native gardens, rain gardens and shorelines with native plants.

The Dakota County Soil and Water Conservation District has partnered with cities and local Watershed Management Organizations to provide Landscaping for Clean Water courses for interested residents. Introductory courses focus on general water quality practices of rain gardens, native gardens, and shoreline stabilizations. Design courses help residents plan and install a project in their own yard. Classes are offered to residents during the winter and early spring.

Landscaping for
Clean Water Initiative

Landscaping for
Clean Water Demo

Education Events:

  Register for Landscaping for Clean Water Classes

Financial Incentive Programs:

Landscaping for Clean Water Grants

Example Projects:

Raingardens and Native Gardens
Native Shoreline Planting


Blue Thumb - Planting for Clean Water