Most Southwest Florida residents who live on a lake or pond may not realize that their waterfront views are actually stormwater detention ponds built for runoff attenuation and treatment to improve water quality before discharging into the Gulf of Mexico. These ponds were actually carved out to supply soil for the foundation of the development, and reshaped to serve a dual purpose as aesthetic water treatment areas.

Homeowners may not realize how much maintenance is required to keep these ponds healthy. Common issues are shoreline erosion, odors, unsightly floating algal mats, and occasionally dead fish. The first step in preserving the aesthetics and the pond’s value is learning about the basic concepts of pond function and maintenance so you can make informed decisions, even if you don’t personally manage the stormwater treatment pond in your neighborhood.

WETPLAN is a great educational program that provides resources and information to anyone interested in improving and caring for their neighborhood lakes and ponds. The program provides workshops several times a year with a panel of experts to explain and answer questions about what you can do, what your neighborhood groups/associations can do, and what assistance is available from county and state agencies. Johnson Engineering is a proud partner of this program, providing our knowledge and expertise to help others understand how stormwater ponds work in your community.

If you would like to know more about how you can help, visit for more information.