Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service’s Healthy Lawns and Healthy Waters Program will host a residential rainwater harvesting and turf management training for Brazoria County residents May 12 in Angleton.
The free event will be 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. at the AgriLife Extension office for Brazoria County, 21017 County Road 171. Online registration is required at https://tx.ag/May12Angleton.
Attendees who register for the event will receive updates, instructions to join the meeting, and materials related to the meeting via email. They can register online or contact John Smith, AgriLife Extension program specialist, Bryan-College Station, at email@example.com or 979-204-0573 with any questions.
The training is being offered in collaboration with the Bastrop Bayou Watershed Partnership.
“The Healthy Lawns and Healthy Waters Program aims to improve and protect surface water quality by enhancing awareness and knowledge of best management practices for residential landscapes,” Smith said.
On the agenda
Attendees will learn about the design and installation of residential rainwater harvesting systems as well as appropriate turf and landscape species based on local conditions and other practices.
“Management practices such as using irrigation delivery equipment, interpreting soil test results and understanding nutrient applications can help reduce runoff and efficiently use applied landscape irrigation water,” Smith said.
Dean Minchillo, AgriLife Extension program specialist in Dallas, said the program will cover proper fertilizer application and efficient water irrigation, which can protect and improve water quality in area creeks. Attendees will also learn about collecting rainwater for residential landscape needs and reducing stormwater runoff.
Justin Bowers, watershed coordinator for the Bastrop Bayou Watershed, will also discuss updates on Bastrop Bayou Watershed Protection Plan activities to improve and protect water quality in this watershed.
Soil testing for turf management
Participants can have their soil tested as part of the training. The soil sample bag and analysis are free to Healthy Lawns and Healthy Waters Program participants.
Residents can pick up a soil sample bag with sampling instructions and the Urban and Homeowner Soil Sample Information Form at the AgriLife Extension offices in Brazoria County. Bags containing residents’ soil samples should be returned to the same location prior to the meeting or within one week after the meeting, or participants may bring them to the training. Attendees should not mail the soil samples to the lab.
Samples will be grouped into one submission and sent to the AgriLife Extension Soil, Water and Forage Testing Lab in College Station for routine analysis, including micronutrients, pH, conductivity, nitrate-nitrogen and other parameters.
The training will include information on understanding soil test results and nutrient recommendations so residents can interpret results once the analysis is mailed to them.
Funding for the Healthy Lawns and Healthy Waters Program is provided in part by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality through a Clean Water Act nonpoint source grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The project is managed by the Texas Water Resources Institute, part of Texas A&M AgriLife Research, AgriLife Extension and the Texas A&M College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.