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No-mow zones are areas alongside a lake or river where grass is allowed to grow unchecked.

Although it may take a little time to adjust to the appearance of unmowed areas, the natural beauty of your shoreline and its benefits will soon become apparent. Here are a few steps to help you get started:

Step 1

  Photo: No-mow zone
  The longer grass helps filter rainwater that washes into the lake and keep Canada geese from coming onto your lawn.

Identify how much area along the shoreline you can leave unmowed. This will depend on the amount of space available. 

Try starting with 3 to 6 feet from the shoreline. However, the larger the area left unmowed, the more effective the no-mow zone.

You will also want to keep a mowed pathway to your dock or other access points. 

Step 2

Simply stop mowing in the area you have identified. You might be surprised by the diversity of plants that are just waiting to grow. 

Step 3

Remove any weeds and invasive species. As the no-mow zone matures, there will be fewer of these unwanted plants.

Although there is no cost involved in creating a no-mow zone, you may wish to invest a few dollars to plant some native shrubs and perennial flowers that provide more erosion protection, colour, and food for butterflies.

Click here for more on adding native plants on your shoreline.

We can help

Knowledgeable staff can help you take action!

  • Not sure where to start? Schedule a free onsite consultation and receive personalized advice for enhancing your properties and protecting water quality.
  • For training opportunities and workshops, please see our events page for current listings.

Programs and Services

Access programs and services to help you take action:


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 Shoreline Demonstration Sites

Visit a naturalized shoreline and see how you can improve your own


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 Seedling Program

Purchase native trees, shrubs, and grasses for your projects 


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 Shoreline Protection

Get free advice and information on protecting waterfronts from common shoreline issues


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 Scugog WATER Fund

Apply for a grant to help with projects on your property in Durham Region within the Kawartha Watershed



 Native Plant Distribution Program

Learn more about the Native Plant Distribution Program.