Farmers and landowners can now apply for £25 million worth of funding to spearhead projects that use nature to protect communities from flooding.
The ring-fenced funding, provided by the government and the Environment Agency, will support natural flood management schemes across England.
Projects must use techniques such as planting trees and creating wetlands to slow and store water to reduce the risk of flooding.
The Natural Flood Management Programme is open to farmers, landowners, environmental groups, catchment partnerships, and local authorities.
Environment Minister Rebecca Pow said: "Nature is an essential weapon in our armoury against flooding.
"That is why we are driving investment to harness the power of nature. This approach not only reduces flood risk and helps tackle climate change, it can also benefit water quality, restore habitats and boost biodiversity."
Environment Agency chair Alan Lovell added: "In the face of a changing climate, and with the frequency and severity of flooding only likely to get worse, we need to act now.
"The pioneers who already work with nature-based solutions to achieve greater flood resilience give me hope."
Projects supported by the £15m pilot include the Dorking Natural Flood Management Scheme, instigated after Pipp Brook in the Surrey Hills flooded due to its steep slopes.
The partners created ‘wet woodland’ that benefits biodiversity and 30 ‘leaky barriers’ that allow water to spill into the natural floodplain, stopping too much water flooding into Dorking.
Expressions of interest will close on 10 November 2023, with projects delivered during 2024-2027.