Tahoe Resource Conservation District

Conservation Landscaping and BMPs

Conservation Landscaping 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. 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 Conservation Landscaping and BMPs practices to help protect  Lake Tahoe in your own backyard.

  • Design and retrofit 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 such as defensible space buffers
    and child pay areas
  • Use lawn fertilizer with care

  • Manage soil nutrition by improving soil conditions and
    through the use of 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 guide California homeowners, contractors and  property managers through the TRPA Best Management Practices (BMP) retrofit ordinance and help you practice stewardship to protect the beauty and value of Lake Tahoe.

2014 Field Season has Ended: 

After a busy field season Tahoe RCD is no longer offering BMP and landscape conservation assistance until further notice.

Please visit the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency Stormwater Program website TahoeBMP.org  Or call their hotline at 775-589-5202 for BMP resource information.

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

For Lake Friendly Landscaping Practices, contact the UCCE Master Gardneners of Lake Tahoe for more information; http://cecentralsierra.ucanr.edu/Master_Gardeners/LTMG/.

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.

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.

All our services are grant funded and subject to change.

Thank you! 


As funding permits, the Tahoe RCD Landscape Conservation Program can help you with the following services and on-line educational resources.

  • Site specific BMP retrofit plans and assistance – Request services below
  • BMP retrofit final inspections – Request services below
  • BMP contractor and landscaper support – Contact us
  • 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