Monday, January 17, 2022

Notice to Residents on Fertilizer Ordinance 16-02



By Gene Burson, Chairman
of the Marco Island Beach
Advisory Committee

As of March 7, 2016, your City Council passed Ordinance 16-02, known as the “Fertilizer Ordinance.” To minimize negative environmental effects – both on land and in our waterways – Marco Island City Council voted to regulate the use of fertilizers containing nitrogen or phosphorous. By reducing the use of these fertilizers, they hope to upgrade the quality of life for city residents.

The fertilizer regulations are based on the Model Ordinance for Florida Friendly Fertilizer Use. Low to no phosphorus fertilizer and slow release nitrogen fertilizer, along with proper utilization, result in absorption by plants and lower levels of nutrients reaching the bodies of water within and surrounding the City of Marco Island.

There will be times of prohibited application. The largest and most significant is the Rainy Season, from June 1 through September 30.

Another new aspect is the Fertilizer Free Zones. Fertilizer shall not be applied within 10 feet of any pond, stream, storm drain, watercourse, lake, canal or wetland as defined by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, or from the top of a seawall. Spreader deflector shields are required when fertilizing adjacent to Fertilizer Free Zones or impervious surfaces.

The City of Marco Island staff will help provide educational materials, notices and/or presentations notifying residents that fertilizers applied within the city shall be formulated and applied in compliance with this ordinance. The Beautification Committee, in conjunction with city staff, shall incorporate into their community outreach programs no less than two educational sessions per year on the requirements of the fertilizer ordinance.

All persons (homeowners) intending to apply fertilizer are required to obtain appropriate permits from the city. A minimum of one business day prior to fertilizer application within the city, the person must apply for an e-mail permit, free of charge, indicating the location, type of fertilizer and acknowledgement that a spreader deflector will be utilized. Professional applicators must have formal classes and pass tests that satisfy the State of Florida that they can and will work responsibly.

This ordinance is in effect NOW. Code Enforcement may visit any site where fertilization is occurring and stop work if a permit was not received or if improper products or methods are being employed.

For more information concerning fertilizer and/or the application of fertilizer on Marco Island, email and request a digital copy of the Fertilizer Ordinance 16-02.

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