Highland Lakes

Country Club and Community Association

Fertilizer Law Helps Protect Lakes from Nitrogen and Phosphorous Runoff

In 2011 New Jersey legislators passed the New Jersey Turfgrass Fertilizer Law to protect NJ surface and groundwater from pollutants by limiting the amount of phosphorous and nitrogen found in commonly-used lawn fertilizer. The law was introduced in stages.

The first phase of the rule went into effect in November 2012 and set limits on when lawns can be fertilized. As a result of this law no lawn fertilization can take place between November 15 and March 1. The second phase of the law, which went into effect January 1, pertains largely to the formulation of over the counter lawn fertilizers; setting limits on the amount of nitrogen in the mix, removing phosphorus from the mix and requiring 20% slow release nitrogen in the mix. The law PROHIBITS the application of fertilizer closer than 25’ of any waterbody.

Here are some helpful links for your review on this important topic:

  • information about rain barrels, organic land care, invasive species, etc. is available in this index of the monthly Rutgers University Green Knight Magazine;
  • review the presentation on New Jersey’s 2011 new fertilizer law by the Rutgers Cooperative Extension office;
  • see page 11 of the February, 2013 edition of the Rutgers University Green Knight Magazine for a discussion of the new fertilizer law.

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