As you trim the topiary and plant the petunias, remember the things you do on your lawn and in the garden can have a significant impact on the quality of area ponds, streams and rivers.
When rain falls on your property some of it will run off, going directly into a water body or entering the storm sewer system. Stormwater does not receive any kind of water quality treatment, so it can carry weed killers, fertilizer, bacteria from pet waste, loose soil and many other pollutants. But there are many things you can do in your own backyard to help protect stormwater quality.
Green Landscaping - this brochure describes landscaping practices such as having your soil tested before applying lawn chemicals, using a rain garden and native plants to soak in more stormwater, using smart lawn watering practices and more to protect water quality.
Grasscycling - this is the easy way to care for your lawn. The idea is to mow and go without spending time bagging or raking grass clippings. Grasscycling inproves the quality of your lawn and keeps grass clippings out of the landfill.
Composting - there are lots of resources on the web that will help you get started composting -- and many ways to do it. This fact sheet provides a simple overview of what composting is and how it benefits the environment.
Recycle yard waste at Fort Wayne City Utilities' Biosolids and Yard Waste Recycling site.