What is a rain garden?
- A rain garden is an attractive landscaping feature planted with perennial native plants. It is a bowl-shaped or saucer-shaped garden, designed to absorb stormwater run-off from impervious surfaces such as roofs and parking lots. Rain gardens can be small, formal, home-owner style gardens, large complex bio-retention gardens, or anywhere in between.
Why do we need rain gardens?
- Rain is natural; stormwater isn’t. Government studies have shown that up to 70% of the pollution in our streams, rivers and lakes is carried there by stormwater. Although most people never think about stormwater, about half of the pollution that stormwater carries comes from things we do in our yards and gardens!
- Planting a rain garden may seem like a small thing, but if you calculate the amount of rain that runs off your roof, you would be very surprised. The rain/runoff is supposed to soak into the ground, but instead heads down the street to the storm drain, carrying pollution with it.
- Keeping rain where it falls, by putting it into a beautiful rain garden, is a natural solution. You not only get a lovely garden out of it, you have the added benefit of helping protect our rivers, streams and lakes from stormwater pollution. You can be part of a beautiful solution!
Check out these pages for more information
EPA’s page Soak Up the Rain: Rain Gardens
Purdue’s page Rain Gardens Go with the Flow
Clear Choices Clean Water’s page Rain Gardens
Indiana Conservation Partnership’s page Rain Gardens