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Residential BMPs

Eco-Friendly Residential Best Management Practices

Residential Best Management Practices (BMPs) are innovative and sustainable strategies tailored for homeowners to significantly impact water quality and manage stormwater runoff right from their backyards. These practices encompass a variety of techniques, from simple landscape alterations like planting native vegetation, which reduces erosion and enhances water absorption, to more structured installations such as rain gardens, green roofs, and permeable pavements that catch and filter rainwater, preventing pollutants from contaminating our streams and rivers. Beyond the environmental benefits, incorporating BMPs into residential areas boosts property aesthetics, increases real estate value, and fosters a deeper connection with the local ecosystem. Engaging in these practices empowers communities, ensuring the preservation and enhancement of the Upper James Watershed’s health, promoting biodiversity, and building resilience against climate change. Residents adopting these measures lead by example, showcasing a commitment to a sustainable lifestyle and the well-being of future generations, making every home a cornerstone in the collective effort to sustain the natural beauty and purity of our water resources.

Rain Garden

A rain garden is a depressed area in the landscape that collects rain water from a roof, driveway or street and allows it to soak into the ground. Planted with grasses and flowering perennials, rain gardens can be a cost effective and beautiful way to reduce runoff from your property. Rain gardens can also help filter out pollutants in runoff and provide food and shelter for butterflies, song birds and other wildlife.

Erosion Control

It was easy during the dry summer months to forget about water issues such as leaky roofs, standing water, and perhaps the most obnoxious and notorious landscaping problem: land erosion. But now we’re heading into wet weather.

Even if you don’t see mudslides and wet gullies, erosion is still happening (or will) in the future. Soil wears away naturally, but we also contribute to the speed of the process when we water our lawns, dig up garden plants, or walk on the ground.

Install Permeable Pavement

Permeable pavements are alternative paving surfaces that allow stormwater runoff to filter through voids in the pavement surface into an underlying stone reservoir, where it is temporarily stored and/or infiltrated. Traditionally paved surfaces are impermeable, converting rainfall to runoff. Permeable pavement slows and captures rainwater, allowing it to infiltrate, promoting a high degree of runoff volume reduction and nutrient removal, and reducing the amount of impervious cover of a developed site. A variety of permeable pavement surfaces are available, including pervious gird pavers, porous asphalt/concrete, and permeable interlocking pavers. While the specific design may vary, all permeable pavement systems have a similar structure, consisting of a surface permeable pavement layer, an underlying stone aggregate reservoir layer, and a filter layer or fabric installed underneath.

Septic Systems

Did you know that as a homeowner you’re responsible for maintaining your septic system? Did you know that maintaining your septic system protects your investment in your home? Did you know that you should periodically inspect your system and pump out your septic tank? If properly designed, constructed and maintained, your septic system can provide long-term, effective treatment of household wastewater. If your septic system isn’t maintained, you might need to replace it, costing you thousands of dollars. A malfunctioning system can contaminate groundwater that might be a source of drinking water. And if you sell your home, your septic system must be in good working order.