Presentation on theme: "Through funds made available from a 319 grant focused on water quality issues in the Spring River Watershed, plans for a demonstration Rain Garden were."— Presentation transcript:
Through funds made available from a 319 grant focused on water quality issues in the Spring River Watershed, plans for a demonstration Rain Garden were put into motion in the spring of 2013. In cooperation with the City Of Carthage and the Spring River Watershed Partnership the Jasper County Health Department went through the steps of developing and building a Rain Garden at Kellogg Lake.
A rain garden is a garden of native shrubs, perennials, and flowers planted in a small depression which is generally formed on a natural slope. It is designed to temporarily hold and soak in rain water runoff that flows from roofs, driveways, patios or lawns. 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. A rain garden is not a water garden, nor is it a pond or a wetland. Conversely, a rain garden is dry most of the time. It typically holds water only during and following a rainfall event. Because rain gardens will drain within 12-48 hours, they prevent the breeding of mosquitoes. Also rain gardens can be developed for commercial or residential use and with a blend of native plants and some exotics can be very appealing to the eye while attracting butterflies, hummingbirds, and other wildlife. Missouri Department of conservation recommends the use of all native plants for implementation in local rain gardens. The demonstration garden seen here follows a all native plant design.
Finding a low area or depression in the target area can be a excellent choice for a rain garden. The site chosen for this garden showed signs of standing water and a week before the ground breaking actually did have water in it, as this picture shows.
Heavy equipment can help to speed up the digging process, but is not required to build a effective rain garden. A shovel and hand tools can keep the budget low and a back strong.
One key part of the demonstration Rain Garden at Kellogg Lake is the use of large rocks from nearby. These rocks saved money and were a nice addition to the edges and general design of the garden.
Each Rain Garden is different mainly to adapt to each situation. In this Garden the general dig down depth was between 2 and 3 feet which is normal. Every location may require a slightly different depth for best results.
Preparing the soil can be a simple of difficult task, it all depends on the composition of the existing soil. Our garden was located in a flood plain allowing for a solid mixture of nutrient rich soil. To improve the soil draining ability sand and gravel can be mixed into the existing soil bed. Sand allows for a faster draining to insure no standing water after 24 hours. Having no standing water will keep mosquito larva at bay.
Two types of smaller stones were used in our process. Decorative rock Functional gravel
Once enough sand and rock have been added to the mix giving it the desired consistency you should be able to pick up a chunk of moistened soil and roll it into a ball much like dough. If the mixture is correct you should then be able to roll it into a tube shape between your hands. The soil should hold together in the tube shape but be slightly crumbly. If it isn’t slightly crumbly the composition may have too much clay and may require the addition of more sand.
The use of weed barrier can be very useful, but should be limited to the edges or where river rock is going to be laid. The center of the garden should only be covered in mulch allowing the water to filter through the mulch and into the native plants and soil much quicker.
Using the weed barrier and river rock to create a inlet for water to run into the center of the garden can be a very effective tool in draining water from nearby areas. A inflow inlet can also be a very attractive addition to modern rain gardens.
For the size of this garden it may not look like there is enough native plants, but these are juvenile plants and will fill out in a year. Using native plants is strongly urged, they can be much more resistant to drought and still provide a very attractive setting for any garden.
Taking your time to plant each individual plant is very important. Different plants require different depths and strategic placement of each plant should be considered. For more information on Missouri native plants contact the Missouri Department of Conservation at(417)629-3423 or visit www.grownative.org. www.grownative.org
Once the final plants are put in the ground it is all downhill from there. Going back and planting grass seed on the surrounding effective areas will help with the visual stimulation later on. It is also important to remember to water the newly implemented garden. Even though the garden should collect water naturally it will still need a boost to establish its root system from the new plants.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 7, through the Missouri Department of Natural Resources has provided partial funding for this project under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act.