This Spring Get Ocean Friendly

Ocean Friendly Gardens

 

Urban runoff is the #1 source of ocean pollution. Water running off our properties picks ups pollutants like fertilizers, pesticides, animal poo, and fine sediment as well as oil, brake pad dust and exhaust from cars. Runoff also contributes to flooding, and it wastes a free source of irrigation in the landscape. On average, 40-70% of residential water use is happens outdoors. Click here to learn more and here to watch a 60 second public service announcement.

Principles - CPR: Conservation, Permeability and Retention

Ocean Friendly Gardens (OFG) revive our watersheds and oceans by applying CPR - Conservation, Permeability and Retention - to our landscapes and hardscapes. OFGs utilize rainwater as the first source of irrigation, create permeable soil and hard surfaces to sponge it up and filter it, and conserve water, energy and wildlife habitat through native plants (and use drip irrigation to help establish the garden and suppliment irrigation). Vegetable and fruit trees can be part of OFGs as as long as they "apply CPR." Click here to learn more about CPR and here for the OFG Sign Criteria (there's also a version of the criteria in a check-box format here). See the OFG Map section below to order an OFG Yard Sign.

Programs & Partnerships

As the above video shows in part, we implement OFG through education, hands-on activities and policy change. (Check with your local Surfrider chapter to see what components they are offering.) We seek to collaborate with government, professionals and non-profits to help put on events and scale-up implementation. Here's info for:

  • Activists - The OFG Activist Toolkit explains how to run program events: walks, classes, workdays, workshops. Here's a brief description of each event: walks, class, workdays and workshops. The Toolkit also has volunteer job descriptions, sample event flyers, tabling visuals, slideshows, case studies & more. Note: the Toolkit only has .pdf files. Go to ChapterNet (Resources>Programs>Ocean Friendly Gardens) for .doc and .ppt files, and an "Intro to OFG" .ppt is in this Public Dropbox folder.
  • Workday hosts - Click here for more information on your responsibilities. Click here for more information on how Surfrider chapters may help. Here's a set of steps to follow to create an OFG.
  • Professionals - Chapters work with professionals who agree to follow the OFG criteria when leading an OFG class or an OFG workday. Professionals who volunteer with chapters may be given priority for leading a chapter event. Click here for more information.

OFG Map

  • See gardens and post yours - learn how others went ocean friendly, and see the water runoff prevented and water use savings, pictures and plants lists, and more. Click here.
  • Order a yard sign - the info is on the map's "Instructions" page (last item) - click here.

Do It Yourself...Or Share This Info With a Professional You Hire

More Resources - click on the "Resources" tab, above, for videos and articles, the recent OFG Annual Report, and more!

3 Steps to Take Now

  1. Direct rainwater into a permeable area like landscaping (such as a basin or dry stream bed)
  2. Apply mulch (such as from a local tree trimmer)
  3. Install some native plants
  4. Replace spray-head irrigation with drip irrigation

Note about searching "Recent Blog Posts" - you can search by category - Class, Lawn Patrol, HOW (Hands-On Workshop), and GAP (Garden Assistance Party) - by clicking on the hyperlinked category in any of the posts. For example, click on GAP in any of the blog posts and it will pull up all the posts having to do with GAP.

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OFG Criteria (long form) and in the checkbox format.

Ocean Friendly Gardens Annual Reports - 2012, 2013

Ocean Friendly Gardens Brochure - download a copy.

Ocean Friendly Gardens How-To Gardener's Guide Book:

  • Surfrider chapters - send an order to Surfrider Mail Order Manager, Jill Tierney, that states how many books you want, your mailing address, and when you need the books by. Jill will give you a price for the books and shipping.
  • General public - order it here.

Videos:

7 shorts from SWRCB on how to retrofit a landscape and hard surface to be an OFG. 

  • #1 - intro to stormwater
  • #2 - killing lawn through sheet mulching
  • #3 - disconnecting downspouts
  • #4 - lawn care
  • #5 - supporting healthy soil
  • #6 - permeable hard surfaces
  • #7 - swales and rain gardens

The value of a rain barrel with Surfrider-East Coast Regional Manager, John Weber

Stormwater outfall pipe in action - spewing runoff into Seattle's Puget Sound (on a rainy day)

A city hall landscape becomes an OFG through hands-on workshop with Conservation Corps

A GAP transforms a park's grass lawn into an OFG.

OFG featured on state water agency website.

Cutting the parkway curb to capture street runoff (LID). An OFG in action, capturing rain.

PSA, short intro video, and 3 videos about levels of OFG programming: Informational, Lawn Patrol, Series.

"Slow The Flow: How To Make Your Garden Act More Like A Sponge" (features San Francisco Chapter's OFG Program)

Pamela Berstler's OFG (Managing Member of G3, The Green Gardens Group)

Elmer Avenue - OFG + green street (Los Angeles Area)

Articles

A small residential OFG done with Surfrider volunteers - Long Beach Daily Bulletin

New York Times on the Garden Assistance Party: text and pictures

Fish put into rain garden-filtered runoff survive; those in un-filtered runoff do not, after just 12 hours!

National OFG Program Coordinator, Paul Herzog, interviewed by Los Angeles City Stormwater blog - click here

Article on OFG Program in Watershed Management Group's newsletter ("Get Your Garden Out Of The Gutter") - click here

Volunteer

Contact your local Surfrider Chapter to see if they are conducting an Ocean Friendly Gardens Program.http://www.waterla.org/downloads

Surfrider Becomes Regular Part of Science Class

April 16 2015

Surfrider Becomes Regular Part of Science Class

Ocean Friendly Gardens Basic Class

Ocean Friendly Gardens (OFG) is a great way for teachers to put a familiar face on science. The Surfrider chapter OFG Chair comes back for a 2nd year of presentations, pointing to the OFG installed there.

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Part 3: Got A Hurricane? Get A Garden!

April 14 2015

Part 3: Got A Hurricane? Get A Garden!

Ocean Friendly Gardens GAP

For Part 3, we head to the East Coast - Wilmington, North Carolina - for an Ocean Friendly Garden sponging up rainwater to help clean up surf and shellfish habitat, plus slow down and sink water to preventing flooding.

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Part 2: OFG Creates Cleaner Surf & Saves Water

April 09 2015

Part 2: OFG Creates Cleaner Surf & Saves Water

Ocean Friendly Gardens Basic Class GAP HOW Lawn Patrol

Did you know your yard can provide the lifeblood of a healthy watershed and ocean? With the proper design, installation and maintenance, you will not only ensure a healthy landscape, but reduce water use and have piece of mind and more free time to spend enjoying the ocean.

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Surfrider’s Top 10 Environmental Priorities

March 30 2015

Surfrider’s Top 10 Environmental Priorities

Beach Access Coastal Preservation Ocean Ecosystems Ocean Friendly Gardens QUAD Rise Above Plastics Surf Protection

What’s on our agenda for 2015? Here are Surfrider’s top 10 environmental priorities for the coming year.

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Part 1: OFG Curbs Pollution & Directs Water Into Landscaping

March 30 2015

Part 1: OFG Curbs Pollution & Directs Water Into Landscaping

Ocean Friendly Gardens Basic Class HOW

The Surfrider Foundation's San Diego Chapter works with a private water retailer to help turn a water guzzling area of a park, and its runoff producing parking lot, into an example of an Ocean Friendly Garden.

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Spring Maintenance Activity - It’s Time For Mulch Madness!

March 16 2015

Spring Maintenance Activity - It’s Time For Mulch Madness!

Ocean Friendly Gardens GAP

Surfrider chapters look for events that are turn-key and make a difference. Like college basketball's March Madness, one Surfrider chapter is teaming up with a city to inaugurate an annual event they call Mulch Madness!

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Healthy Soil Supports Clean Surf

March 02 2015

Healthy Soil Supports Clean Surf

Ocean Friendly Gardens

G3/Green Gardens Group's "Soil In The City" Conference was mind-blowing! The world's leaders in soil broke down how soil is the foundation for cleaning water runoff, reversing desertification, and sequestering carbon.

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School Garden Overcomes Challenges & Goes With The Flow

February 16 2015

School Garden Overcomes Challenges & Goes With The Flow

Ocean Friendly Gardens Basic Class GAP HOW

The Peninsula Elementary School Rain Garden shows the importance of patience, utilizing Surfrider chapter resources, and developing partnerships. The project team had to solve problems: flooding problems in a school courtyard, clogged storm drain piping, and a small budget.

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4,3,2,1…and Another Win in Federal Court for Clean Coastal Waters in Maui

January 26 2015

4,3,2,1…and Another Win in Federal Court for Clean Coastal Waters in Maui

Know Your H20 Wastewater Water Recycling Legal Ocean Friendly Gardens Water Quality

A federal court found that the County of Maui was unlawfully damaging the water quality of Maui's coast on Friday, January 23rd, with a ruling that injection well discharges from the Lahaina Wastewater Reclamation Facility are violating the Clean Water Act. Judge Susan Oki Mollway found that the County is liable for discharges into Wells 1 and 2. This follows a ruling from May 2014 when Judge Mollway similarly found unpermitted violations from Wells 3 and 4.

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Deepening Our Roots With The Native Plant Society

January 16 2015

Deepening Our Roots With The Native Plant Society

Ocean Friendly Gardens

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Surfrider Releases Ocean Friendly Gardens 2013 Annual Report

December 05 2014

Surfrider Releases Ocean Friendly Gardens 2013 Annual Report

Ocean Friendly Gardens

The Surfrider Foundation’s Ocean Friendly Gardens Program undertook an awesome effort in 2013, detailed in a newly released annual report.

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Garden Helps Ensure Cleaner Surf In Hermosa Beach, CA

December 05 2014

Garden Helps Ensure Cleaner Surf In Hermosa Beach, CA

Ocean Friendly Gardens HOW

A beautiful Ocean Friendly Garden now sits in what used to be an unused grassy area in front of a highly utilized city community center. It's a model for directing rainwater into the landscape for irrigation, preventing runoff, and creating wildlife habitat.

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California Drought Ideas In Line With Surfrider’s Approach

November 17 2014

California Drought Ideas In Line With Surfrider’s Approach

Blue Water Task Force Know Your H20 Ocean Friendly Gardens

Today's release of a report, which Surfrider contributed to, lists actions that state and federal agencies can take now and prepare for the future. It's right in line with Surfrider's Clean Water Initiative approach.

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Surfrider Visits Washington D.C. to Lobby for Federal Priorities

November 07 2014

Surfrider Visits Washington D.C. to Lobby for Federal Priorities

Ocean Ecosystems Ocean Friendly Gardens Rise Above Plastics Water Quality

Surfrider members and staff visited our nation’s capital to lobby for a set of federal priorities related to the protection of oceans, waves, and beaches.

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Students Build Garden Friendly To Ocean & Butterflies

October 24 2014

Students Build Garden Friendly To Ocean & Butterflies

Ocean Friendly Gardens GAP

This project got started when Surfrider-First Coast Chapter Ocean Friendly Garden (OFG) Coordinator, Paul Hayden, got a request from Fletcher Middle School Art Teacher, Chris Hicks (in Jacksonville Beach, Florida), to help turn three garden spots at the School into Ocean Friendly Butterfly Gardens.

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Steps To Create An Ocean Friendly Garden

October 03 2014

Steps To Create An Ocean Friendly Garden

Ocean Friendly Gardens GAP

From checking out local gardens and evaluating your site, to hosting a workday, there are steps to success for both the garden owner and the Surfrider chapter.

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California Coast Scores During Legislative Season

October 03 2014

California Coast Scores During Legislative Season

Beach Access Coastal Preservation Know Your H20 Ocean Friendly Gardens Water Quality

Last year’s legislative season in California was a bust for the coast and ocean. In 2013, Surfrider worked on ten coastal and ocean protection bills, and only two bills were signed into law. Surprisingly, this year’s season was the opposite and very successful. Surfrider actively worked on more than a dozen bills and the Governor recently signed nine of those bills into law. Talk about a game-changer for the coast.

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CA Law Lets Homeowners Replace Grass Without Being Fined Or Sued

September 19 2014

CA Law Lets Homeowners Replace Grass Without Being Fined Or Sued

Ocean Friendly Gardens

Homeowner association (HOA) residents can now replace their turf grass with low water use plants without fear of being fined or sued by their HOA. Less turf means cleaner surf, since urban runoff is the #1 source of ocean pollution.

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Government Declares Drought In Western States - Again & Again!  Our Approach For Dry & Wet Years

September 17 2014

Government Declares Drought In Western States - Again & Again!  Our Approach For Dry & Wet Years

Blue Water Task Force Know Your H20 Low Impact Development Water Recycling Ocean Friendly Gardens

Surfrider's Clean Water Initiative is a solution for wet and dry years - and for drier and wetter climates. It connects together our work to reduce water use, utilize rainwater as a resource, and recycle "wastewater."

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A Turn For the Better For A Maui Beach Park

September 09 2014

A Turn For the Better For A Maui Beach Park

Ocean Friendly Gardens GAP

Maui beach parks have been a source of polluted runoff. The Surfrider-Maui Chapter installaed two Ocean Friendly Gardens at the S-Turns Beach Park to demonstrate a new model.

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Paul Herzog, Coordinator, Ocean Friendly Gardens Program: pherzog@surfrider.org and 310-430-9760