In Indiana many backyards border lakes, streams and wetlands. It is important to keep natural buffers around these areas to protect water quality and wildlife habitat.
Backyard conservation techniques located adjacent to natural communities will extend areas that wildlife can inhabit. Planting native grasses and plants will increase the rooting depth which may help curb erosion problems on rivers and streams.
Controlling erosion and reducing rainwater runoff will decrease the amount of nutrients and sediment entering our lakes and rivers. Keeping leaves and clippings off of pavement will also reduce nutrients entering storm sewers that route rainwater directly to lakes or streams.
To learn more about how your LAWN impacts our streams and lakes, check out the CLEAR CHOICES for CLEAN WATER website and take the pledge to go Phosphorus-Free. Water quality friendly lawn care includes practices such as using phosphorus-free fertilizer, landscaping with native plants, managing yard and pet wastes, and overall lawn reform.
Q. Where can I get my water tested?
A. In St. Joseph County, Indiana options for testing your water include sending it to the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH), sending it to a commercial lab, or buying a home test kit.
The following links should be helpful, but give us a call if you still have questions:
WATER TESTING LABORATORIES Fact Sheet prepared by Jane Frankenberger, Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering
Indiana State Department of Health's list of Indiana Certified Microbiology Drinking Water Laboratories