Hello James Changers!

During October, the James River Association celebrated “River Hero Homes Month” and the efforts that citizens undertake to reduce pollution in the James River. A total of 35 individuals pledged to do three of the five following river friendly practices: 

These 35 James Changers pledged to:

Pick up after your dog – 18 pledges
Reduce or eliminate the use of herbicides/pesticides – 32 pledges
Avoid invasive species and use native plants to support wildlife and reduce watering needs – 28 pledges
Use alternatives to municipal drinking water for irrigation – 22 pledges
Reduce need for fertilizer by encouraging healthy soil with mulch and compost – 31 pledges

In today’s more urbanized environments, stormwater can move quickly over paved surfaces, carrying pollutants directly to the James. By using methods to slow the movement of water, it can be absorbed into the ground more gradually and reduce the amount of pollution.

The James River Association also held four rain barrel constructions workshops in this time frame, giving away a total of sixty-one rain barrels, native plants, and native plant field guides to participants. Used correctly, these barrels can capture 3,660 gallons of water from each rain storm!

On a sunny day, rain barrels can be used to water a garden, wash a car, or more! (As a reminder, the water inside rain barrels is not potable and should not be drank) Want to purchase a rain barrel of your own? There are still remaining drums and hardware kits at the James River Association’s Williamsburg Office available for purchase, contact Lower James Restoration Coordinator Ryan Walsh for details at rwalsh@thejamesriver.org or (757) 856-1242. They can also be purchased online here.

It is never too late to pledge to become a River Hero Home! The pledge is entirely free and you will receive a flag to display in your front yard, as well as discounts at local nurseries. Take the pledge and do your part to help the James River and keep the comeback coming!