What does a garden have to do with the ocean? Urban runoff is often the primary source of ocean pollution. Moving and cleaning water uses lots of energy, which can contribute to climate change and sea level rise. Gardens can also be a source of air pollution and yard waste, which can make their way into the ocean.

But gardens can be beautiful, resourceful, wildlife-friendly and prevent runoff. Veggie gardens can do this, too. Here’s how – The Ocean Friendly Gardens (OFG) Program educates and assists people in “applying CPR – Conservation, Permeability and Retention – to revive our watersheds and oceans:”

Conservation of (a) water, (b) fertilizers, pesticides and herbicides, (c) energy (moving & cleaning water use lots of energy), (d) wildlife habitat and (e) reduced use of gas-powered maintenance machinery (air pollutants) and yard waste through native or climate-appropriate plants, spaced with their mature size in mind.

Permeability through healthy, biologically active soil, and utilizing materials for – or making a cut in – driveways, walkways and patios that allow water to percolate into the soil.

Retention devices like rain chains, rain barrels and rain gardens retain water in the soil for the dry seasons or save it to water veggies, preventing it from running off the property.