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Healthy Lawns Healthy Waters Education Project

Texas Water Resources Institute is delivering "Healthy Lawns Healthy Waters" citizen training programs in watersheds with watershed protection plans.

Map of Texas with polygons indicating watersheds that have EPA-accepted watershed protection plans.

Project Area

Location: Statewide


Pet waste, improperly applied fertilizers, and other pollutants from residential lawns can contribute to nonpoint source pollution and easily enter the watershed via stormwater runoff. Many Texas communities are experiencing rapid population growth, and consequently more residential lawns, which can increase nonpoint source pollution.

Watershed protection plans (WPPs) are designed to promote and guide activities that improve and protect water quality. As of March 2024, there are 43 U.S. Environmental Protection Agency accepted WPPs in Texas, all of which emphasize the need for outreach and education programs to inform the public on how to reduce pollutant inputs and runoff volume related to urbanization and residential lawns.

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Project Description

January 2017 – August 2025

Through several sequential projects with TCEQ Texas Water Resources Institute delivers Healthy Lawns Healthy Waters education programs to communities in watersheds with EPA-accepted WPPs. The goal of the education program is to protect water quality by providing information on ecologically appropriate quantities and timing of fertilizer application to residential lawns. Participants also learn about rainwater harvesting techniques, appropriate lawn and landscaping management practices, and receive a free soil test analysis through the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Soil, Water, and Forage Testing Laboratory.

Healthy Lawns Healthy Waters materials and presentations are tailored to local watershed hydrology and needs identified in WPPs. The program has been held in over 15 watersheds, all of which do not meet state water quality standards for primary contact recreation due to high levels of bacteria and may also have concerns for elevated nutrient concentrations.

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For More Information

TWRI's Healthy Lawns Healthy Waters program webpage

To find out more about the NPS Program, call 512-239-6682 or email us at

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