This Spring, Watch Those Phosphorous Fertilizers
Submitted by Elizabeth Mooney on Wed, 2012-04-11 17:06.
Spring is here and so is gardening season -- but this spring, you might want to give some extra thought to your fertilizers.
A new state law has taken effect that limits phosphorous content in lawn fertilizers, in order to help clean up New York's waterways -- including those we fish and swim in.
Statewide, more than 70 bodies of water we use for drinking, fishing or recreation are impaired or negatively affected by phosphorus overload from storm water runoff including portions of Lake Ontario, Lake Champlain, Onondaga Lake, New York City drinking water reservoirs, the Chesapeake Bay Watershed and many other smaller ponds and lakes.
To address this issue, lawmakers recently passed the New York State Dishwasher Detergent and Nutrient Runoff Law. Under the new provisions of the law, only lawn fertilizer with less than 0.67 percent by weight phosphate content may be applied legally.
Application of any fertilizer containing nitrogen, phosphorus or potassium on lawns or non-agricultural turf is prohibited between December 1 and April 1. Application of any fertilizer on lawns or non-agricultural turf within 20 feet of a water body or on paved surfaces is restricted.
The law also requires retailers to display phosphorus fertilizer separately from phosphorus-free fertilizer and to post signs notifying customers of the terms of the law.
Here's to a beautiful garden and lawn -- and a health environment too!
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