New Carrabelle landscaping law promotes conservation

Native plants can be beautiful and support the environment.

Native plants can be beautiful and support the environment.

Lois Swoboda
Published: Wednesday, January 23, 2013 at 15:24 PM.

 

On Jan. 3, Carrabelle’s City Commission passed an ordinance to promote water conservation measures in landscape design.

Although the basics of Ordinance 454 was mandated by the North Florida Water Management District (NWFWMD), city commissioners had some discretion in writing the law. City Attorney Dan Hartman said Carrabelle’s newest ordinance was modeled on an ordinance passed in Port St. Joe.

The planning and zoning board reviewed the new law before the Jan. 3 meeting and suggested several changes to the original draft

“The purpose of these regulations is to establish minimum standards for the development, installation, and maintenance of landscaped areas without inhibiting creative landscape design,” reads the new ordinance.

The goal of the newly created standards is water conservation. Water usage is reduced by preserving existing plant communities; or re-establishing native plant communities; using water for irrigation efficiently; and growing site specific plant materials. Native plant materials are preferred because they require little or no supplemental water to survive.

Eastpoint’s Joyce Estes, vice chair of the NWFWMD, said she supports the new landscape ordinances. “We do need to be more aware of our environment,” she said. “We all want pretty lawns but we do need to be more aware of what God gave us.”



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