Mitch Woodward, Area Specialized Agent [email_address] Wake County 4001-E Carya Dr Raleigh, NC 27610-2914 (919) 250-1112
When rain falls on a natural environment it can either soak into the soil or it can runoff into the surface water. The remaining percent of rainfall is intercepted by trees, crops, grass, and other ground cover that serves to dissipate much of the energy contained within each raindrop. The water can then re-evaporate back into the atmosphere, or slowly infiltrate into the ground. The infiltrated water eventually reaches groundwater, which slowly travels through the soil back into local waterbodies. As the water infiltrates and flows, it is cleaned of any pollutants it may have collected along its journey from the atmosphere into the ground. Unfortunately, with increased urbanization, the rain encounters more and more concrete and other hardened surfaces which do not allow for infiltration of water into the soil.
Rain gardens vary in shape and design. The options are numerous with lots of plant varieties that can be incorporated.
The benefits of a rain garden are numerous!
Look around your yard for low areas where water may collect after big storm events.
Rain gardens work best when constructed in well-drained or sandy soils, but they can also be installed on sites with less permeable soils such as clays. By digging a hole at the rain garden site, the soil can be examined.
Fill a hole with water to observe infiltration. If water does not drain within 2 days of no rainfall, a backyard wetland may be best.
Collected checklist data of where to look
Rain gardens for homeowners
North Carolina CooperativeExtension Backyard Rain Garden Program Mitch Woodward, Charles Humphrey, Bill Lord,Dwane Jones, Bill Hunt, Kelly Collins, Lara Rozzell, Wendi Hartup, Charlotte Glen
Goal: Seeing roofand yard runoff as resource rather thanwaste product
Raingardens slow water runoff and improve water quality
Development Impacts on the Water C ycle10% 55% 50% 15% Credit: NCSU
Rainfall Storage Infiltration Rice Creek Watershed District
Rain Gardens Can Be Welcome Additions to Landscapes!!!
Design Principles of Rain Gardens• Handles stormwater at its source.• Decreases the velocity of water flowing from impervious surfaces.• Improves water quality before it enters the stream or ditch.• Facilitates infiltration• Beautiful
Rain garden benefits•Add beauty (and value) to your property•Minimizing rainwater runoff to storm drains or streams whileallowing excess rainwater to filter slowly into the soil•Protecting our valuable water resources•Provide wildlife habitat•Adaptable in scale and land use
Match $$$ provided by involving County Extension Agents …..I’m just $ matching funds to you, aren’t I?
Garden Location & InstallationObserve your yard during a rainfall event • Where does water travel or collect?
Rain garden planning•Source and path of stormwater•Size of impervious surfaces•Soils type (sandy, clayey, rocky or mixed)•Proximity to wells, foundations, septic systems•Existing landscape features