Healthy Lawns


Meet our Healthy Lawns spokesgnome, Frederick Lawn Gnomested

Health Lawn Gnome

The perpetually positive 4’ tall Gnomested joined the Erie County Department of Environment & Planning earlier this year and was the subject of a popular naming contest conducted by the Department that ultimately produced over 500 name suggestions from residents. The gnome’s mission to promote healthy lawns factored into the naming selection. The winning moniker was suggested by three entrants: Karen Leeds, Zoe Powers, and Janice Steinborn, each of whom will get a visit & photo with Freddie. 

Follow Freddie on Instagram to find out where you can meet him! @freddiethegnome

Safe Home for the Gnomes

Make your Lawn a Safe Home for the Gnomes!

To help make the Western New York community healthier, in 2017 the Erie County Environmental Management Council with assistance from the Cornell Cooperative Extension began a “Safe Home for The Gnomes” campaign to reduce the amount of chemicals used on area lawns.  "Home for the Gnomes" name and graphics were created by Daemen College Graphic Design students - Jonathan Hutchison, Angela Marini, Violet Lent, Emily Metzger, and Matthew Tanner under the direction of Professor Kevin Kegler.


Take the pesticide-free pledge and receive a free lawn sign!

Receive a FREE lawn sign when you pledge to protect your family, pets, wildlife and waterbodies by having a pesticide-free lawn or eliminating use of pesticides on your lawn, and making your lawn a pesticide-free safe home for the Gnomes at:

Overuse and misuse of garden chemicals can be harmful to humans, pets, wildlife and waterbodies. Collectively, residents control about 900,000 acres of lawn in New York alone - 75% of the managed turf in the state. The good news is there are many ways to care for your lawn that avoid putting family and neighbors at risk. Pledge to eliminate pesticides in your lawn including insecticides, herbicides (weed-killers, “weed and feed”), fungicides and other chemical pesticides and receive a free lawn sign to let your neighbors know that your lawn is healthy and safe.

Below are resources on how to reduce pesticide use.  Thank you for your interest in reducing the use of pesticides!

 Highlighted Resources:

NYSDEC-GreenTips-LawnCare NYS Department of Environmental Conservation Lawn Care Quick Tips Video

LawnCarecover Cornell best lawn care resources

Lawn Care without Pesticides Lawn Care without Pesticides

EPAHealthyLawnsCoverPage US Environmental Protection Agency’s  Healthy Lawn Brochure




WNY Guide to Native Plants for your Garden by Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper, which includes descriptions of native plants by habitat with planting plans.


Other Resources:

  Thank you to the Cornell Cooperative Extension for putting together these resources, and supporting the Healthy Lawns initiative!

For questions or comments, please contact the Erie County branch of the Cornell Cooperative Extension. Contact information is here.

Last updated: July 22, 2021 11:55am