University of Florida

Florida-Friendly Landscaping™

Helping Florida One Yard at a Time


Introduction

Florida-Friendly Landscaping™ (FFL) can help you transform your yard into a beautiful oasis that will not only conserve precious water resources and reduce pollution, but also help you save time, energy, and money.

FFL was developed to address serious problems of pollution and disappearing habitats by enlisting homeowners in the battle to save our natural environment. This program provides special educational and outreach activities directed at the community to help residents reduce pollution and enhance their environment by improving home and landscape management.

About the Program

Rain falls on yards, roads and parking lots, flows from the gutters into storm drains, and then washes into tributaries and lakes or bays, carrying pollutants like fertilizers, pesticides, soil, and petroleum products.

Scientists have discovered that fertilizers and pesticides from residential areas are serious threats to the health of Florida’s water and ecosystems. Runoff containing nitrogen from fertilizers or toxic substances from pesticides can damage aquatic plants and animals that live in fresh and salt water environments.

The Florida-Friendly Landscaping™ Program encourages homeowners to water efficiently; mulch; recycle; select the least-toxic pest control measures; put the right plant in the right place; fertilize only when necessary; provide food, water, and shelter for wildlife; protect surface water bodies (e.g., bays, rivers, streams, and ponds); and minimize stormwater runoff.

Proper implementation of FFL practices in your yard will protect the natural environment around us for future generations to enjoy.

Objectives

The objectives of the Florida-Friendly Landscaping™ Program are to:

  • Reduce stormwater runoff
  • Decrease non-point source pollution
  • Conserve water
  • Enhance wildlife habitat
  • Create beautiful landscapes

Principles

Florida-Friendly Landscaping™ emphasizes nine major principles:

  • Right plant, right place
  • Water efficiently
  • Fertilize appropriately
  • Mulch
  • Attract wildlife
  • Control yard pests responsibly
  • Recycle
  • Reduce stormwater runoff
  • Protect the waterfront

For more information, contact your county Extension office or visit the Florida-Friendly Landscaping™ website.

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