Responsible Gardening Practices
Organic gardening at the Richmond
Minimize the Use of Chemicals
Use pesticides only when non-chemical methods are ineffective. Choose the least toxic material and do not apply chemicals to your garden or lawn in excess, especially before irrigation or an anticipated rain event. View information about pesticide alternatives for managing specific pests and integrated pest management strategies.
Use Fertilizer Sparingly
Do not apply fertilizers to your garden or lawn in excess, especially before irrigation or an anticipated rain event. Use compost instead. If you must use fertilizer, give preference to slow-release and organic fertilizers. Fertilizers contain large amounts of nitrogen, which provide food for some pests and can leach into waterways when applied in excess, where it promotes algal blooms that deplete aquatic oxygen supplies.
Do Not Over-Water
Excessive watering of lawns and gardens can lead to increased runoff, carrying chemical pollutants to storm drains into our waterways. Installing a drip irrigation or micro-spray system helps conserve water and decrease runoff.
Garden with Native Plants
Plant native shrubbery and plants. Because they are adapted to the local climate and habitat, native plants require less water and are more disease-resistant. View a list of Bay Area native plants and information about native plant garden tours.
Prevent Soil Erosion
Prevent soil erosion from hillsides and flat surfaces by planting grass and other rapid-growth vegetative covers that hold dirt together.
Contain Yard Waste
Sweep excess lawn clippings, leaves, and other yard wastes and compost them in a contained space in your yard or dispose of them in the green waste cart. Excess soil should be swept off the pavement, not hosed into storm drains.
Store Chemicals Properly
Store chemicals in a covered area during a rain event.