Cosmetic fertilizers: Fertilizers used on residential properties to promote lawn and plant growth. They are not the fertilizers used for the purpose of agriculture or maintenance of golf courses.
Delivered So Far:
2) Committee May 2014 Email Update including overviews of:
- The Science considerations
- The Social considerations – survey highlights
- The synopsis of recommendations
3) Preliminary Best Management Practices Soil Management guiding document.. It details the the findings and full Good, Better & Best Recommendations. Limited availability email: firstname.lastname@example.org
See the Pigeon Lake Watershed Association www.plwa.ca Healthy-Lake Lawn Maintenance information and resources.
Why a Topic on Best Management Practices for Fertilizers?
The science shows a high correlations between Total Phosphorus and Total Nitrogen and lake eutrophication (similar to the premature aging of the lake). Much of the soil is already nutrient rich around the lake. Plants will only uptake the nutrients they need and the rest goes into the lake with the runoff of the rain or gravity has it work it way through the soil an into the lake. Nitrogen also promotes the growth of aquatic plants.
What are the goals and objectives?
This subcommittee is to prepare a Watershed Beneficial Practice Guide for Cosmetic Fertilizers and Soil Nutrient Management and to create recommendations for individuals who manage lawns and currently use cosmetic fertilizers, Pigeon Lake watershed municipalities and groups such as the Pigeon Lake Watershed Association (PLWA).
The Cosmetic Fertilizers and Soil Nutrient Management Topic Mandate (TOR)
What progress and outputs has the committee produced so far?
By the end of 2012 the committee had scoped their work and set about challenging their assumptions, and to learn what else they needed to know about nutrients. The committee had presentations by Tim Penstone, from EnviroPerfect Solutions, Sarah Skinner from the Battle River Watershed Alliance and Chris Trichreb the AESRD Central Lake Limnologist.
Studies are happening around the world to understand the links and relationships between the different factors that results in a proliferation of algae blooms, sometimes including cyanobacteria (Blue/Green Algae) which can have toxins that have the potential to be harmful to people and animals.
A researcher was hired to gather the most current information from across North America about different approaches and evidence for changing the practices of people to minimize the use of fertilizers. Dora presented some of her findings at the ALMS Conference in Sept 2013. View Researcher Dora Berry’s presentation on Banning Cosmetic Fertilizers with Phosphorus
At that same ALMS Conference Committee Chair Bob Gibb presented. Sept 2013 Cosmetic Fertilizer Presentation
Information from the 2012/13 in-depth water studies are starting to come in. Of the nutrients coming into the lake from external sources 48% are from all around the lake. Much of this is due to fertilizer applications to lawns, and not enough natural areas to uptake and filter the nutrients before they get into the lake. This is good news because all we have to do is to adopt lake-healthy lawn maintenance practices to start to make a real difference to the lake.
View the 2014 Leaders Session Presentation on Fertilizers
The PLWMP #2 Survey – Cosmetic Fertilizers: What do you think? was sent out December 29th, open until January 17th (via the PLWMP website Home page) to gather public input to assist in producing the recommendations for individuals, municipalities and the PLWA along with learning the type of information that the watershed community wants to see in the guide.
Key results along with other committee findings are listed in the Cosmetic Fertilizer & Soil Management Committee Update
The PLWA has heard what people want to help them to adopt lake-healthy lawn maintenance.
Click on image to see overview brochure.
Who was on the sub-committee?
A number of people attended the committee on a regular basis and a few irregularly. The regular attenders included:
- Arin MacFarlene Dyer, ALMS
- Doris Bell, SV Crystal Springs Mayor, APLM Rep
- Don Davidson, Grandview Mayor and member of the APLM
- Susan Ellis, PLWA President
- Michael Gaian, PLWA Director
- Robert (Bob) Gibbs, PLWA Director & PLWMP Steering Committee Chair
- Ruth Harrison, Councillor, Leduc County & the County APLM Representative
- Larry McKeever, Councillor, County of Wetaskiwin & their APLM Representative
- David Samm, Executive Director, BRWA
- Nicholaus Moffatt, Parks Planning, Leduc County Staff
- Chris Teichreb, Central Alberta Lake Limnologist, AESRD
AESRD: Alberta Environment, Sustainable Resource Development
ALMS: Alberta Lake Management Society
APLM: Association of Pigeon Lake Management
BRWA: Battle River Watershed Alliance
PLWA: Pigeon Lake Watershed Association
PLWMP: Pigeon Lake Watershed Management Plan