What is a Stormwater Management Pond?
A stormwater management pond is an engineered structure constructed to gather rainfall and surface water runoff. The pond temporarily stores water and then releases it at a controlled rate. A single pond can provide erosion and flooding control while enhancing water quality.
Through a combination of landscape and structural features, stormwater management ponds allow sediment and contaminants to settle out of runoff before it is released into a natural watercourse. Stormwater ponds also hold back water in order to release it at a controlled rate during large storms. Controlling the flow of stormwater protects downstream lands from erosion and flooding.
In addition, stormwater ponds are constructed to be an attractive feature with an environmental benefit. Stormwater management facilities are designed to be surrounded by natural vegetation and to provide habitat for birds and animals.
How can you help?
Protect Natural Buffers
Stormwater ponds are designed to mimic a natural system; therefore, it is important to allow a natural buffer to grow around the perimeter of the pond. The natural buffer is made up of native plants and grasses and should not be mown or trimmed. It is important to note that the property lines for homes near stormwater ponds do not extend to the waters edge. These buffer areas should not be mown or altered.
Reduce or Eliminate the use of Pesticides and Fertilizers
The use of pesticides or fertilizers in grassed lawns around stormwater ponds should be limited or eliminated completely. These chemicals are easily carried away by runoff into the stormwater pond which can cause algae blooms and negative impacts to the downstream natural watercourse. Where possible, use organic alternatives to chemicals and plant native species that require low maintenance and no pesticides.
Planting native species of trees, shrubs, grasses and flowers has numerous benefits. These species can dramatically reduce the amount of water used for irrigation, chemicals used for pest control, and fertilizers used for growth. Information on native landscaping species can be obtained from the Upper Thames River Conservation Authority.
How You Can Help Checklist:
- Allow for a natural un-mown buffer around stormwater ponds while respecting municipal property lines
- Limit or eliminate the use of pesticides and fertilizers in lawns that back onto stormwater ponds
- Plant native species of shrubs, wildflowers, and trees
- Ensure that yard waste is disposed of properly.
Managing Yard Waste
Dumped yard waste in natural areas or around stormwater ponds can have an adverse affects on the health of the natural system. Dumped materials smother natural vegetation, may contain harmful chemicals, and non-native plant seeds. The best solution is to compost leaves, grass clippings, and weeds on your own property. The City of London has yard waste collection days for brush and leaves throughout the year. To learn more about waste collection days, please refer to the most recent version of the City of London’s Residential Recycling and Garbage Collection Calendar.
If you have any other specific questions regarding stormwater management ponds feel free to email: