08 • 07 • 2019

“How To” Videos for Installing Ocean Friendly Gardens

By Katie Day

Ocean Friendly Gardens is Surfrider Foundation's volunteer-run landscape education, hands-on training and advocacy program. The program uses a simple approach- redesign managed and developed watersheds into more naturally functioning ecosystems by contouring landscapes for rainwater retention; creating living soil to sponge up water, filter pollution and sequester carbon; and installing climate-appropriate plants to create wildlife habitat and a sense of place.

The Los Angeles Surfrider Chapter, Surfrider LA, has a fantastic Ocean Friendly Gardens Program that transforms water-intensive yards throughout the Mediterranean climate of LA to climate-appropriate natural landscapes. In addition to reduced water use, these gardens create beautiful landscapes that collect stormwater, sequester carbon, reduce the need for fertilizers and pesticides, and create healthy habitat for local wildlife (including critical pollinators!).

The success of the LA Ocean Friendly Gardens Program is due in part to its dedicated volunteers and successful partnerships with local gardening groups, like SELVA EcoGardens. Together Surfrider LA and SELVA EcoGardens have hosted workshops, garden tours and, of course, constructed Ocean Friendly Gardens throughout LA County. To expand their impact and help Ocean Friendly Gardens programs throughout the region (and beyond, just note that plant lists will shift), this team has created four “How To” videos, including guidelines for planning your garden, removing turf, selecting plants and more!

The videos are provided below, and pair great with other Ocean Friendly Gardens resources on the Surfrider website, including:

For an additional list of instructions and recommended timelines, check out the SELVA EcoGardens DIY Steps and Resources page.

Introduction: Why invest in Sustainable Gardens?


How To #1: Conducting a Site Survey


How To #2: Capturing Rainwater Runoff


How To #3: Turf Removal and Rain Garden Prep


How To #4: Planning and Planting your Garden