Urban Fertilizer Management

Aerial of lawns

Turf grass covers a large portion of the Chesapeake Bay watershed

More than 3.5 million acres of urban pervious lands exist in the Bay watershed, comprising nearly 10% of its total area. This diverse category of land cover includes both fertilized and un-fertilized turf and is managed in many different ways. Bay states have collectively targeted more than 45% of the pervious land for the application of urban nutrient management (UNM) practices to help achieve load nutrient reductions to meet the Bay TMDL by 2025.

The Panel then reviewed more than 200 research studies and reports to understand turf grass N and P dynamics, homeowner fertilization behaviors, the effects of P fertilizer restrictions in watersheds outside of the Bay and the effect of various outreach campaigns to change those behaviors. The Panel also examined historic and recent trends in fertilizer sales across the watershed and confirmed the general adequacy of the technical assumptions for fertilizer inputs to pervious lands in the CBWM. Based on the science and best professional judgment, the Panel came up with a set up recommendations that outlines three types of nutrient reduction credits associated with the BMP of Urban Nutrient Management. On March 13, 2013 these recommendations were approved by the Water Quality Goal Implementation Team and became final! Download the final recommendations below to understand more about this important BMP.

To listen to a webcast on the final recommendations of the Urban Nutrient Management Expert Panel follow the link  (please note, UNM begins at 54:47):


Recommendations of the Expert Panel to Define Removal Rates for Urban Nutrient Management

Chesapeake Bay Program approved recommendations of the Expert Panel to Define Removal Rates for Urban Nutrient Management.

Size (3 MB) | File type (.pdf) | Download

Technical Requirements for Entering the UNM Practice into Scenario Builder

Appendix F of the Urban Nutrient Management Expert Panel Recommendations

Version september 13, 2013 | Size (161 kB) | File type (.pdf) | Download

CBP Expert Panel Literature Review: Urban Fertilizer Management

Size (116 kB) | File type (.xlsx) | Download

Other Resources

Download All Files Above

Download all the files in Urban Fertilizer Management section as a compressed .zip file.

Size (3.37 MB) | File type (.zip) | Download