Rain gardens are to protect the surface water in our community by managing the rainwater in our yards. They are created by rerouting rainwater from downspouts, driveways or patios, creating a berm, adding soil, planting native plants, and adding rocks and mulch. A normal rain garden can cost approximately $400-$500.
A rain gardens are defined by the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency is “a shallow depression that has deep-rooted native plants and grasses used to absorb rain water, especially during large rainfall events. These gardens are installed near runoff sources as small as a downspout or as large as a parking lots in order to capture water runoff which typically contains higher concentrations of nutrients. Storm water runoff from developed areas increases flooding potential and carries pollutants from streets, parking lots and lawns to local water sources.”
The first rain garden was developed in Maryland in in 1990 to help with the pollution problems facing the Chesapeake Bay. Now, communities, neighborhood, homeowners and others have created rain gardens throughout the nation.
The benefits include:
· Helps reduce storm water flow and filters the pollutants into local waterways.
· Helps control flooding
· Enhances the beauty of yards
· Provide a wonder for wildlife
· Transfers rainwater runoff into a resource rather than a nuisance
Storm water carries pollutants such as fertilizers, petrochemicals, pet wastes, yard and roof debris, rubber and heavy metals from tires. With living near many large bodies of water, making the rain water as clean as possible will help clean up the rivers, streams and lakes in the area. Rain gardens allow 30% more water to soak into the ground than not having anything.
By adding native plant meant for the Ohio climate, plants good for ground temperatures no colder than 5 degrees and can sustain hard rains, hail and wind. Some of those plants include:
· Yellow Buckeyes
· American Yellowwood
· Hameln Fountain Grass
· Giant Silver Grass
· Bleeding Heart
· Indigo Bushes
· Iris Cristata- Dwarf Crested Iris
· Many, Many more
For a guide on how to design your rain garden, visit this website