As the Weather Begins to Improve, Remember Nassau County’s Lawn Fertilizer Law

PWD Encourages Residents to Use Lawn Chemicals and Fertilizers Responsibly by Applying Them After April 1st.

As part of the Preserve Plainview initiative, the Plainview Water District aims to highlight the environmental and water supply repercussions associated with premature and excessive lawn fertilization. The District implores all residents to be mindful of the Nassau County “Fertilizer Law” that prohibits fertilizing prior to April 1 of each year.

“The Plainview Water District hopes residents are able to enjoy their green lawns and landscapes this spring, while being mindful of the regulations in place by our County to ensure we are protecting our only source of water,” said PWD Commissioner Marc Laykind. “To safeguard our sole-source aquifer and local waterways, we urge residents to follow Nassau County’s fertilizer regulations. This small act significantly aids our initiatives to enhance groundwater quality and preserve our environment.”

In accordance with Nassau County’s “Fertilizer Law,” all fertilizers are prohibited from being applied before April 1, 2024 and after November 15, 2024. Residents should always apply the minimum amount of lawn chemicals to the soil and make sure they are stored properly. Additionally, all fertilizers or other lawn chemicals must be kept in cool and dry locations inside of containers that are not prone to leaks. By following instructions listed on the packaging, homeowners can minimize the amount of fertilizer used, limit the amount that runs off into the ground and into our sewer systems so the impact to the environment can be kept to a minimum.

“With the sporadic weather during the transition of seasons, it’s crucial to avoid using these fertilizers until the time is appropriate,” said PWD Commissioner Andrew Bader. “Applying fertilizers just before the ground thaws causes fertilizer to be washed off your lawn, where they can then enter our waterways. We kindly ask residents to be mindful of the correct timing for using these chemicals, as it not only benefits the environment but also saves you money.”

Organic fertilizers—such as cotton seed meal, bone meal and manure—are other examples of effective alternatives to typical fertilizers that can benefit the environment. Biodegradable insecticides that break down to harmless substances in 2-to-21 days are also another effective yet safe way to treat your lawn, while protecting the aquifer.

“The more chemicals and toxins we apply on the ground and in our lawns, the greater the likelihood of them seeping into the groundwater,” said PWD Commissioner Michael Chad. “This reality makes selecting the appropriate fertilizer type equally as important as the timing of when it can be applied to your lawn. Higher nitrogen levels in our groundwater requires treatment to prevent these elevated levels from affecting our drinking water. The District encourages residents to pay attention to the types of fertilizers they are purchasing and opt for a natural or organic option whenever possible.”

For additional information on the proper use of lawn and garden products, please call (516) 931-6469 or visit the Plainview Water District website at Be sure to sign-up for email updates on the District’s homepage to receive additional information about water district activities.