The Rain Garden
Stormwater runoff has become an increasingy important problem, in terms of both volume and pollution. A common problem for homeowners is what to do wet and soggy areas of their yard. Rain gardens help address both of these issues. A rain garden is a designated zone where water accumulates during storms and wet spells. Instead of grass, this area is planted with plants that are tolerant of standing water, and can also withstand the dry periods between storms. Typically a majority of native plants are used, and many of these are flowering ornamental perennials, creating an attractive garden, often in an area visible to passing neighbors and pedestrians.
The benefits of rain gardens are several. Most importantly, by creating a holding zone for water that would typically end up in the gutter, the total volume of runoff from a storm is reduced. This has an important positive benefit to rivers, streams, and lakes where high runoff volumes cause many devestating effects. Instead, water is able to slowly seep back into the ground and replenish the water table. In a related way, storm runoff also picks up phosphorous and nitrogen from lawn fertilizers and street debris, as well as pollutants like gas, oil, antifreeze, and other chemicals which can also cause major problems for the streams and lakes that it drains into. When this water is allowed to slowly seep into the ground, most pollutants will become attached to the soil, and removed from the water. As a benefit to the homeowner, rain gardens provide a solution to existing wet spots where water naturally accumulates, or a beautuful and environmentally-friendly garden to replace an area of lawn.
LOCATION: rain gardens can be located in existing wet spots, or can be positioned strategically to intercept runoff from driveways, lawns, or roof gutters. Gutters can be diverted directly into the rain garden to hold a large volume of roof runoff.
a SHORT LIST of native plants suited to rain gardens:
- Swamp Milkweed
- Joe-Pye Weed
- Blue Flag
- Blazing Star
- Gooseneck Loosestrife
- Mountain Mint
- Swamp Goldenrod
FernCreek Design *
Accord, NY 12404
(585) 309 - 2397 * info@FernCreekDesign.org
Serving the Catskills, Shawangunks, and Hudson Valley including Ulster County, Dutchess County, Sullivan County, Ellenville, Kingston, New Paltz, Woodstock, Phonecia, Wawarsing, Accord, Naponach, Spring Glen, High Falls, Rosendale, Stone Ridge, Tillson, Gardiner, Wurtsboro, Hurley, Shokan, Rhinebeck, Rondout, Port Ewen, Hillside, Lincoln Park, Connelly, Eddyville, Bloomington, Esopus, Pine Bush, and surroundng areas.