Water runoff is the #1 source of ocean pollution in urban areas, and it erodes stream banks and creates flooding. Also, nutrients from fertllizers are a major cause of ocean acidification. The water could irrigate landscapes, recharge groundwater and help ensure base stream flows. Plus, plants do not need chemicals and commercial fertilizers. Click here to learn more about the problem. Read about how soil works to “sponge up” water, pollution, and carbon (from carbon dioxide).

Ocean Friendly Gardens is part of Surfrider’s Clean Water Initiative, an integrated approach to water, where you will find resources such as our short, animated film, “The Cycle of Insanity.”

Ocean Friendly Gardens (OFG) revive our under-hydrated watersheds and polluted oceans by applying CPR – Conservation, Permeability and Retention – to our landscapes and hardscapes:

  • C – Conserve water and wildlife habitat with native or climate appropriate plants.
  • P – Permeable, living soil and hard surfaces that runoff to landscapes to filter pollutants, sponge up water for plants to tap into during dry months, and absorb carbon dioxide from the atmostphere.
  • R – Retain rain as the first source of irrigation.

OFGs are like rain gardens (pictured above/right), where water is slowed down, spread out, and allowed to sink in. Click here for a short-form version of the criteria, and here for a longer list of best practices. Think of the criteria as the techniques to follows. If you meet the short-form criteria, please order and display our yard sign – see info below in the “OFG Map” section. You can stay in touch with OFG through our Facebook page.

To learn more or find out how you can plant an Ocean Friendly Garden, contact Paul Hayden.