Adopt a Drain – Spring 2023

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It’s time for our ‘Adopt a Drain’ newsletter – spring edition!

As we gear up for the warmer days ahead, it’s time to talk about responsible gardening – especially when it comes to using fertilisers and chemical sprays. Let’s get into it, shall we!

An ‘Adopt a Drain’ refresher:

Whatever goes down our storm drains eventually flows (untreated!) into our waterways. ‘Adopt a Drain’ encourages individuals and groups to adopt the storm drains in their neighbourhood, making a pledge to help keep it clear of pollutants. By doing so, we can keep our lakes and rivers swimmable, protect aquatic life and maintain the health of our ecosystems.


Responsible gardening for our freshwater

Your gardening habits could be impacting our lakes and rivers, even if you live kilometers away from them.

Fertiliser, herbicide use and other lawn care practices can be big contributors to stormwater pollution.

When it rains, excess fertiliser, chemical sprays and grass clippings are picked up by stormwater as runoff, eventually making their way into our lakes and rivers.


Tips and tricks to trial this spring

Clear water is crucial for healthy ecosystems and enjoying our lakes and rivers. Below are 5 gardening tips for keeping pollutants out of our waterways:

1. Fertilise sparingly 
2. Mindful weed control 
3. Try mulching
4. Be sprinkler smart
5. Less lawns, more native gardens and meadows

An amazing example of a lawn turned meadow from ‘Rewilding Magazine‘.


Help us spread the word

The ‘Adopt a Drain’ whānau continues to grow throughout the Upper Clutha, showcasing the incredible passion our local communities have for protecting our waterways. But we’re not stopping here – we’re on a mission to keep this momentum going, reducing stormwater pollution every step of the way!

Do you know a household in our area that might be interested?

Share this post and help us grow this initiative. We encourage anyone interested to get in touch by emailing

Adopt a drain, protect our waterways

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