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All drains lead to the ocean. Saving water and preventing urban runoff begins in Ventura's own backyards. 


The Problem

From unnecessarily treating our gardens and lawns with chemical fertilizers and pesticides to applying too much water, we’re killing all the beneficial life in our soils that support beautiful and healthy plants, and creating polluted runoff. Landscaping chemicals don’t stay where they are applied. Instead, they can leach into groundwater or be washed away by runoff when it rains or when misdirected irrigation runs off our properties. The resulting stormwater and road runoff pollutes local waterways and harms coastal ecosystems by causing harmful algal blooms and killing fish and other aquatic animals. Water affected by runoff is dangerous to swim and play in.

Lawn before any action has been taken

The Solution

The best way to protect clean water is through a more natural landscape that supports a diversity of native plants, and mimics nature.

Ocean Friendly Gardens are shaped naturally to capture rain and runoff to act like a sponge. OFG also provide native habitats for bees, birds, and butterflies, and can even help mitigate climate change as healthy plants and soil combine to capture and store carbon from the atmosphere.

Want to see an interactive map of current Ocean Friendly Gardens? Check it out here.

Our Ocean Friendly Garden program sees landscapes and streets as solutions to water pollution.

We have these standards to accomplish this:

  • Contour landscapes for rainwater retention
  • Create living soil to sponge up water
  • Filter pollution and sequester carbon
  • Install climate-appropriate plants to create wildlife habitats

Volunteer with us! Email ofg@ventura.surfrider.orgfor information on upcoming events!


Signs, Brochures, and Educational Resources

Benefits of Healthy Soils and Ocean Friendly Gardens