(Virginia Beach, Va., April 18, 2011) – With April 22 right around the corner, the Chesapeake Bay Program’s Plant More Plants campaign asks homeowners to take the campaign’s slogan, Grow Some Good, literally and make a pledge to plant perennials, shrubs and trees as a way to celebrate. In Maryland, the Department of Natural Resources is working with the campaign to make it even easier by offering a $25 coupon towards the purchase of a tree at participating nurseries and garden centers through the Marylanders Plant Trees initiative.
“Planting native trees helps clean the air, curb polluted runoff and raise property values,” said Maryland Governor O’Malley. “I encourage all Marylanders to plant more plants and more trees. Together, we can all do our part to create a smarter, more sustainable future for our children.”
By adding some extra green to their landscapes this Earth Day, homeowners will do more than just enhance their curb appeal; they’ll contribute to the cleanup of the largest estuary in the United States, the Chesapeake Bay. A growing threat to this important resource is stormwater runoff, and with the spring season upon us, runoff occurs more frequently as heavy rains wash pollutants from fertilizers, pesticides, pet waste, and other sources out of our backyards and into the Bay.
As homeowners pledge to put more trees and plants into the ground this season, they will be adding expansive root systems, which help to absorb and filter this stormwater runoff, collectively helping to reduce pollution levels within the Bay’s watershed.
The pledge can be found on the campaign’s website, www.plantmoreplants.com, and emphasizes planting of trees, shrubs and perennials; avoidance of harmful invasive species; and environmentally friendly turf management practices. The Plant More Plants campaign pledge gives homeowners a simple and easy way to take action and do their part in cleaning up the Chesapeake Bay and other nearby waterways this Earth Day.
“Taking the Plant More Plants pledge is a simple way for people to take their excitement over Earth Day and turn it into actions that have benefits all year long. Not only can following this easy pledge help protect water quality, it beautifies your yard too,” said Gary Waugh, public relations manager for the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation and the Plant More Plants campaign coordinator.
This Earth Day, the Chesapeake Bay Program’s Plant More Plants campaign and the Marylanders Plant Trees initiative hope that homeowners will “put their stake in the ground” and take the pledge. By enhancing their landscapes so they can better enjoy their backyards this summer, the benefits to homeowners are clear. However, the ecological benefits will have even great reach, as those more-beautiful backyards increase the amount of stormwater runoff absorbed – ultimately improving the quality and health of the Chesapeake Bay watershed.
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