Here is an image of our rain garden, if you would like to learn more, you can always contact me or stop by. I have posted notices when the city has had grants to help build rain gardens. Last year my wife applied and got one (FYI, everyone that turned in a completed grant ended up getting one that year so no favoritism or anything…) Raingardens put water into the ground instead of into the storm sewer system. Below are a couple of pictures of the raingarden after the big recent storm event where we got about 1.5″ of rain in a short period. The rain garden was designed for about 1″ rain events so this was beyond the design. It turned out that there was a little back up, but the water had drained after about 45 minutes. This was also the first big rain event that did not start up my sump.
Here is a link to the city stormwater management page on the city website. Each year grant applications are due by 5/1. We don’t get alot of applications so your chance of landing one is pretty good. The grants don’t come close to covering the cost, but it helps. The grants are funded and overseen by the stormwater fund. We are still learning about how these works. 2nd Street Phase 2 will have rain gardens built into the medians and boulevards.
Benefits I have seen:
- Sump pump runs less in heavy rain events.
- Addressed low spots in my back yard.
- Vegetation is already attracting bees and butterflies.
- Currently requires alot of maintenance, but will establish in a couple of years.
- Colorful and very attractive. Eliminates about 40% of the stormwater runoff from my property.
- I used all native plants which will require little maintenance after establishing.
- I also get wild strawberries.
Why these are good for the city:
- Keeps water from running directly into rivers.
- Keeps stormwater from carrying pollutants into rivers.
- Reduces cost of large scale stormwater infrastructure.
- May reduce long term maintenance costs.