Protecting & Restoring Long Island's Peconic Bays
Soil is a living and life-giving natural resource. Maintaining healthy soils will keep your yard productive and reduce pollution to local waterways.
The Suffolk County Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) developed a comprehensive, concise and user friendly Soil Health Guide to help the public understand the connection between healthy soils, clean waters and a functioning landscape. The Guide highlights best management practices for professional landscapers, landscape contractors and homeowners.
Healthy soils play an important role in the filtration of pollutants carried by precipitation and stormwater runoff. Good soil health also facilitates reduced fertilizer use and reduced watering. Good soil health is therefore critical to maintaining good ground and surface water quality on Long Island.
Freshly planted plants at the Peconic Estuary Program Riverhead Rain Garden.Poor soil health results in increased impermeable surfaces, increased stormwater runoff, diversions and man-made waterways, which ultimately leads to higher pollution loads into our surface water bodies.
Soil health is influenced by manmade changes to topography, soil texture, drainage, vegetation and landscape design. Too often artificial drainage patterns and systems are developed and constructed during development of land which do not support plant health—an important component in healthy soil systems. Artificial drainage systems often become overwhelmed and erosion issues and flooding of the existing natural drainage systems increases as a result, thus compounding the problem.
Learn more about what you can do in your yard to reduce pollution to our bays on the Create a Peconic Friendly Yard page.