Tahoe Resource Conservation District

Landscape Conservation and BMPs

Landscape Conservation and BMPs

Lake Tahoe clarity has been declining at a rate of about one foot per year. This declining clarity negatively impacts property values, recreation, tourism, wildlife habitat and aesthetic value. Conveyance of sediment and nutrients from developed areas into local waterways is the primary cause for the decline of water quality in Lake Tahoe. 

Drought Conditions in the Sierras have greatly increased the need to conserve water and protect our communities from the threat of wildfire.

Please remember that everything you do on your property affects the health of our watershed.

Photo of Stormwater BMP Tahoe

Conserve Landscaping Lake Tahoe

What You Can Do!

Implement Landscape Conservation practices to help protect  Lake Tahoe in your own backyard.

  • Design and maintain your property to manage stormwater
    and reduce soil erosion
  • Utilize BMP design tools at TahoeBMP.org to create your own BMP plan
  • Create and/or expand stream or shoreline buffer areas to
    reduce the amount of pollution leaving your property
  • Use native and adapted plants
  • Limit lawn size to functional use areas such as defensible space buffers
  • Use lawn fertilizer with care

  • Improve soil conditions with organic amendments and through the use of organic mulch
  • Update and maintain your lawn irrigation system to limit water
    waste and nutrient rich runoff
  • Landscape for wildfire protection by implementing
    a defensible space plan
  • Control and eradicate invasive weeds
  • Properly dispose hazardous and solid wastes

How Tahoe RCD Can Help!

The Tahoe RCD can help you practice stewardship to protect the beauty and value of Lake Tahoe.

The 2015 Field Season is off to an early start! 

The Tahoe RCD is currently accepting requests for landscape conservation technical assistance. Please make an office appointment or we can arrange a meeting at your property. 

Unfortunately, the Tahoe RCD is no longer designing BMP plans; however, we are happy to provide technical assistance in your BMP design and implementation efforts.

Please visit the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency Stormwater Program website TahoeBMP.org  Or call their hotline at 775-589-5202 for BMP resource information. You can now get small BMP retrofit plans approved electronically!! Homeowners, contractors, and consultants can submit plans for small BMP retrofit proposals that disturb less than 7 cubic yards and get an approval online http://tahoebmp.org/SmallBMPRetro.aspx

If you have a past BMP evaluation that was done by the Tahoe RCD and would like a copy of your evaluation please contact info@tahoercd.org with the subject line “BMP evaluation copy” or call us at 530-543-1501 ext.113

All our services are grant funded and subject to change.

Thank you! 


The Tahoe RCD Landscape Conservation Program can help you with the following services and on-line educational resources.

  • Site specific irrigation efficiency evaluations – Request services below
  • Sustainable turf management and turf conversion -
    Request services below
  • Defensible space education with local fire professionals -
    Request services below
  • General conservation landscaping - Request services below

Go to Online Service Request Form


Thank you for taking action to stop stormwater pollution in the Lake Tahoe Basin. Learn more about what you can do on the stormwater webpage and follow us on Facebook at TahoeRCDStormwater!

Don’t miss the resources on our Landscape Conservation webpage and check back to learn how your property can become Tahoe Friendly Landscape Certified in 2015.

For additional Lake Friendly Landscaping resources, contact the UCCE Master Gardeners of Lake Tahoe; http://cecentralsierra.ucanr.edu/Master_Gardeners/LTMG/.

All our services are grant funded and subject to change.

Thank you!