TAMPA, Fla. —  Seasonal fertilizer bans around the Bay area are set to begin Thursday, June 1, including those in Hillsborough, Manatee, Pinellas and Polk counties.

“The fertilizer ban is a valuable tool for us. It’s an inexpensive tool,” said Rob Burns, the project coordinator with Pinellas County Environmental Management. “We can do a lot of stuff at the end of these treatments. But it’s really most effective if you can stop it at that source.”

What You Need To Know

  • Seasonal fertilizer bans to begin June 1 

  • Pinellas environmental official said ban is a valuable tool

  • Public's cooperation with ban is important

Burns gave Spectrum Bay News 9 a tour of Lake Tarpon. At 2,800 acres wide, he said the lake acts as a basin when it comes to the amount of water it collects from the surrounding area.

“This is where all of our stormwater goes. That’s what feeds this lake,” Burns said.

Which is why Burns said the public’s cooperation with the county’s rainy season fertilizer ban so important.

“What they do directly impacts the lake,” Burns said. “So understanding that and knowing that things like not fertilizing during the summer can help us out with this system, that’s great.”

A measure in the new state budget would prevent local governments from enacting new seasonal fertilizer bans over the next fiscal year. Multiple environmental groups are calling on Gov. Ron DeSantis to veto the item, which is part of a $6.2 million appropriation to fund a study on fertilizer bans by the University of Florida.

While the measure wouldn’t stop bans already in place from going into effect, it would prevent changes from being made.

DeSantis has yet to indicate his position on the issue.