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Lake County, Fla. Caps Nondrought-Tolerant Turf

The new landscape ordinance for Lake County, Fla. specifies that for new commercial or residential construction, nondrought-tolerant turf, like St. Augustine (pictured) cannot comprise more than 60 percent of the landscaping. St. Augustine grass is omnipresent in the
Sunshine State.

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Lake County in central Florida is home to more than 1,000 lakes and rivers and towns/cities you've never heard of--Astatula, Eustis, Fruitland Park, Howey-in-the-Hills, Umatilla, to name a few unfamiliar names.

The county is currently holding a series of public meetings on its newly adopted landscape ordinance. One of the biggest changes is cutting back on nondrought-tolerant turf, like St. Augustine.

For new commercial or residential construction, nondrought-tolerant turf cannot comprise more than 60 percent of the landscaping.

The 40 percent remainder might be xeriscape, perhaps some Bahia grass or other Florida-friendly plants.

Lake County has produced a list of over a 1,000 Florida-friendly plants to choose from, plus plants that must be removed from the landscape. A pdf of the plant list can be viewed at by clicking on the "landscape requirements" link.

Additionally, there is the interactive "Florida-friendly Plant Database" that contains about 380 trees, palms, shrubs, flowers, groundcovers, grasses and vines recommended by University of Florida/IFAS horticulture experts and available at nurseries throughout Florida. The site specifies plants for three regions of Florida (north, central and south).

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June 18, 2019, 8:46 am PDT

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