13 Ways You Can Help the Lake


  1. Always check boat, trailer and equipment for plant fragments before launch and after take-out.

  2. Respect Shoreland Zone Regulations. Before making any change on your land, check with your town to see what’s permitted and what’s not in the shoreland: 250’ of the lake and 75’ of streams.

  3. Control storm water run-off from buildings, paths, driveways and road. Check your property on a rainy day and fix run-off sites by planting vegetation or constructing swales to direct water flow away from the lake.

  4. Cultivate a wooded buffer. Trees, shrubs and grasses slow the flow and filter soil and pollutants from rainwater before they end up in the lake.

  5. Limit lawn size, mow less often, and don’t rake duff within 75 feet of shore.

  6. Limit fertilizer, herbicide and pesticide use. Long lasting residues in these chemicals can turn lakes green and harm aquatic life. Never use fertilizers containing phosphorus!

  7. Don’t stress the septic system. Inspect the system yearly. Pump the tank regularly. Systems 20 years and older should be inspected by a specialist. Use phosphorus-free cleaners, and detergents. Stagger laundry loads. Minimize water use. Don’t put grease or toxics down the drain.

  8. Construct docks and floats with lake-friendly materials. Choose cedar, cypress, plastic, or aluminum over wood that’s pressure-treated with arsenic.

  9. Dogs, humans and boats should never be washed in the lake!

  10. Observe headway speed within 200 feet of shore. Boating in shallow water disturbs fish habitat and stirs up sediment.

  11. When you replace a boat motor, choose a clean 4-stroke engine.

  12. Preserve wildlife habitat on land and underwater. Lake shallows and shorelands are home to many native species and nurseries for young.

  13. Support your Tacoma Lakes Association!