Rethink Your Lawn
A chemical-free lawn is safer for
children and pets.
Lawns are everywhere in the American landscape. And while they can be useful
for recreation or places where family members and employees can relax, they also have many
- they require frequent watering to stay green in during our long dry
- lawn chemicals contribute to the pollution of our neighborhood creeks
- power tools used to maintain lawns contribute to local air and water
- grass clippings from lawns fill our landfills and transporting them
further contributes to air pollution
You can make your landscape more River-Friendly by:
- limiting turf to those areas where it has a practical function, such as
for play or recreation
- accepting clover and other low growing plants in your lawn, thereby
avoiding the use of herbicides to maintain a grass monoculture
- selecting suitable turf varieties (see
UC IPM Turfgrass)
- keeping sprinkler system well-maintained
- limiting the use of chemicals (see
Our Water Our World,
UC Guide to
Healthy Lawns, and
- using electric or hand-powered tools instead of gas-powered tools
Removing unneeded lawn and replacing it with California Native or
Mediterranean plantings will:
- reduce water consumption
- reduce yard waste
- reduce the use of herbicides, pesticides, and synthetic fertilizers
- reduce air pollution caused by power equipment
- increase wildlife habitat
Grass alternatives, such as this
Field Sedge, use less water than standard
Here are some links to get you started…
Get ideas for your landscape by checking out the garden photos at
Here are some more in depth articles on specific RFL topics that you might
find of interest:
Mulch, Grasscycling, and Compost
Fertilize Naturally — Is Feeding
Frenzy Really Needed?
Plant Trees, Save Energy!
Right Plant, Right Place!
Take Action to Save Water Outdoors…
Lawn Care: How Green is Your Grass?
Rethink Your Lawn
Pests Bugging You?
River-Friendly Pest Control
Managing Common Pests
Interview about RFL (MP3)
Choose California natives first
Watch the YouTube video
Flow - Make Your Landscape Act Like a Sponge"
to learn about the importance of landscaping to stormwater quality.
The Seven Principles of
Click on any section to learn more