What is a rain garden and how does it work?

A Rain Garden receives water from impervious (hard) surfaces such as rooftops, sidewalks, driveways and patios. The shallow depression of the garden holds the water so it can slowly infiltrate back into the soil as the plants, mulch and soil naturally remove pollutants from the runoff.

What is the purpose of a rain garden?

A rain garden is a depressed area in the landscape that collects rain water from a roof, driveway or street and allows it to soak into the ground. Planted with grasses and flowering perennials, rain gardens can be a cost effective and beautiful way to reduce runoff from your property.

Do rain gardens really work?

Rain gardens are effective in removing up to 90% of nutrients and chemicals and up to 80% of sediments from the rainwater runoff. Compared to a conventional lawn, rain gardens allow for 30% more water to soak into the ground. … Because rain gardens will drain within 12-48 hours, they prevent the breeding of mosquitoes.

How do you build a rain garden?

Create the rain garden by building a berm in a low spot in the yard, then build swales to channel runoff from the gutters and higher parts of the yard. The water is then absorbed into the soil through the network of deep plant roots. Use a mix of plants adapted to your area and to the different water depths.

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Where should rain gardens be placed?

The rain garden should be located in a place that can collect as much impervious area (driveway, roof, sidewalks) runoff as possible. The best areas are generally where water naturally drains but doesn’t hold water. It should also be located at least 5′-15′ away from your home.

What are 3 benefits of rain gardens?

Filter pollutants from runoff, • Recharge groundwater, • Conserve water, • Protect guts, ponds and coastal waters, • Remove standing water in your yard, • Reduce mosquito breeding, • Increase beneficial insects that eliminate pests, • Reduce potential of home flooding, • Create habitat for birds & butterflies, • …

What characteristics are necessary for a plant to thrive in a rain garden?

Criteria for Selecting Rain Garden Species

Plants that need full sun need at least 6 to 8 hours of direct sun during the growing season; plants that require shade cannot tolerate more that 3 hours of direct sun. The hours and angle of sunlight change with the seasons, too.

Are there any famous rain gardens?

Patagonia has installed bioswales at its headquarters in Ventura, CA. … But the biggest creator of bioswales in the West, and the city that’s giving free native greenery to its citizens and even landscaping it into their rain gardens, is a rainy one: the City of Portland.

Do rain gardens attract mosquitoes?

Will mosquitoes like rain gardens too? No. Mosquitoes require at least seven days of standing water to complete their cycle before. A properly constructed rain garden should drain within twenty-four hours after a rain event.

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Can you plant a garden next to your house?

Don’t build up garden beds around the house without allowing for adequate drainage around the house. Don’t plant trees or large shrubs next to or near the house. … Your garden beds should be graded away from the house, with surface drains provided to take excess water away from the building.

Are hydrangeas good for rain gardens?

This hydrangea (Hydrangea arborescent ‘Annabelle’) is a native species well-suited to a rain garden planting.

When should you build a rain garden?

You should build your rain garden in a strategic location that has full or partial sun, near a runoff source such as a downspout or driveway. It should also be at least 10 feet away from any house or building foundation and at least 25 feet from a septic system or wellhead.

Are Rain Gardens expensive?

The cost associated with installing residential rain gardens average about three to four dollars per square foot, depending on soil conditions and the density and types of plants used in the installation. Commercial, industrial and institutional site costs can range between ten to forty dollars per square foot.

What are the important parts of a rain garden?

The rain garden consists of a vegetated or stone ponding area, a mulch layer, a planting soil layer, a sand bed, and a gravel base. The multiple layers work together to filter pollutants from water, allowing it to infiltrate into the groundwater supply uncontaminated.

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