Wednesday, August 14, 2013

10 Ways Create a "Trout Friendly Lawn"

Trout Friendly Lawns - Wood River Land Trust and Beyond

Pebble Mine, Save Bristol Bay, Metolius River Restoration Project, Eastern Abandoned Mines Project.  Being a fly fisherman means being concerned with not only protecting trout, but also clean water.  Even though we should be concerned and help support projects far away, preserving clean water starts in our backyards.

In 2007 the Wood River Land Trust was started to help protect the Wood River Valley in Idaho, and even certifies homeowners lawns as "trout friendly." I live in a different world than Idaho, but the watershed I live in should be protected as well, and the advice given to homeowners in the Wood River Valley by creating a trout friendly lawn to protect their watershed applies to every fly fisherman concerned about preserving clean water.

My favorite part of creating a trout, or river, friendly lawn is that it takes less work and less money.  Here are 10 ways to create a "Trout Friendly" Lawn

Water Wise and Stormwater Management Tips:

  • Conserve water: water your lawn before 10 am or after 6pm (not during the heat of the day to reduce evaporation) or thru irrigation system with soil moisture sensor
  • Water deeply and infrequently
  • Direct gutters away from paved areas onto vegetation to reduce runoff, or better yet into a rain barrel to be used when watering your plants
Lawn Garden Maintenance Actions

  • Leave grass clippings on lawn or compost them rather than putting them in the trash
  • Reduce the use or eliminate the use of synthetic fertilizers, herbicides and pesticides.  Instead use organic slow release fertilizer or compost on lawn
  • Pick up after pet
  • Spot spray herbicide rather than broadcast spraying and follow the product's directions...only spray when it is most effective to control weeds.
Habitat Improvement
  • Uses native and drought-tolerant plants.  These plants need less water, and since they are native to your area, will be easier to grow 
  • Remove invasive plants
  • Get involved in a local river clean up or stream protection and improvement organization to promote the conservation of water and protection of local fisheries.