Healthy lawns help prevent nutrient runoff

As a reader of the WBV Observer at home, and as the president of The Scotts Miracle-Gro Company at work, I would like to take this opportunity to comment on a recent article by Patrick McGannon entitled “The harmful consequences of fertilizing your yard.”

The article is right on point regarding the importance of keeping fertilizers and other lawn care products out of stormwater systems and local waterways. What I feel should have been included in the article is the fact that a healthy lawn, regularly fed with non-phosphorus lawn food, actually prevents nutrient runoff into streams and lakes.

Scientific research repeatedly demonstrates that strong, healthy turf is one of the best ground covers for absorbing water. Ninety percent of the weight of a grass plant is in its roots, which keeps soil in place, preventing erosion and runoff. In fact, healthy grass can absorb most of the runoff from roofs, patios, driveways, sidewalks and streets that would otherwise go directly into storm sewers, lakes and streams. Lawns are over 2,000 times more effective at preventing soil erosion than bare soil.

Additionally, the millions of grass plants in your lawn help clean the air, trap dirt and remove carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases from the atmosphere. The grass roots and soil microbes act as a natural water filter to capture and break down pollutants.

Once again, I applaud Mr. McGannon and the Bay Village Green Team for their continued work to educate homeowners about sustainable lawn care practices. We live in a great community, and we all need to do our part to ensure we’re taking care of the environment around us.  


Barry Sanders, Westlake
President, The Scotts Miracle-Gro Company

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Volume 4, Issue 10, Posted 11:42 AM, 05.15.2012