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Two alligators lounge tail to tail on a canal bank.

Being Florida-Friendly™

Water, water, everywhere

We are in Florida after all. Who would believe we could run out of water? It seems the sunshine state is practically surrounded by water and inland, the fresh water springs and lakes seem abundant. They are, but the issue isn’t necessarily about quantity but quality. Salt water intrusion, nutrient loading and other general pollutants have begun to change our ecosystems. It happened gradually and like the proverbial frog in the pot of water we may just be realizing the heat has been turned up. The question is what can we do?

Aligator sunning on a grass bank

Keep your yard Florida-Friendly, for all Floridians! Photo by David Austin

Being Florida-Friendly™

The University of Florida has helped develop something they call Florida-Friendly Landscaping™ (FFL). According to their website, ” Florida-Friendly Landscaping™  means using low-maintenance plants and environmentally sustainable practices. They state, ‘Learn how you can have a beautiful landscape that could save you time, energy and money while protecting our future”. The University of Florida developed it with the help and input of stakeholders and government agencies. It’s based on nine principles and its meant to protect our environment while we create a beautiful place in our yards and neighborhoods.

Learn for free!

This month we are offering two free classes having to do with these 9 principles and how you can incorporate them into your own gardening practices. Saturday, May 8th, there will be an online class from 10 am until 12 pm called Irrigation  for your Florida Lawn. Your can register or learn more about this class by clicking here. It is based on Florida-Friendly Landscaping™ principle number three to “Water Efficiently”.  The second class will be in person at Robbins Nursery South in Sebring. It covers all nine principles and is a Florida-Friendly Landscaping™ Talk and Tour. Like the name states, It will include a talk on the nine principles and be followed by a tour of the Robbins Nursery’s Florida-Friendly™ Plants. Register for this tour by clicking here

Veiw of a Florida Pond

Florida is full of lakes and ponds. Fertilizers and other pollutants can muddy the waters. Protecting it one yard at a time is part of the solution. Photo by Taylor Davis

Stay in touch!

In Highlands County, our office is at 4509 W George Blvd., Sebring. The Master Gardener Help Desk is open Monday – Friday from 9 AM to 3:30 PM.                                                                                        That’s what’s new from the Hometown Gardener. Like and Follow me on Facebook at Hometown GardenerRead my other blogs by clicking here.                                                                               Sign up for our Highlands County Master Gardener Volunteer, “Putting Down Root” Newsletter Here. Join our Facebook groups Highlands County Master Gardeners, Science-Based Florida Gardening Answers, Central Florida Butterfly and Pollinator Club, and Heartland Beekeepers

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