SILVER SPRING, Md. (AP) — Montgomery County officials say they are taking steps to cut the amount of stormwater that runs off county parks, carrying pollution into waterways and the Chesapeake Bay.

Efforts include the construction of rain gardens and other structures to filter stormwater, reducing fertilizer and pesticide use, and planting trees along streams to help absorb and filter storm water. More than 2,500 volunteers have also helped remove more than 40 tons of trash. The county has more than 35,000 acres of parkland.

County officials say park visitors can help by properly disposing of litter and pet waste. County residents can also help by ensuring septic systems are properly maintained and practicing sustainable landscaping and gardening.

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