Rain gardens are landscaped areas designed to capture and treat stormwater runoff from rooftops, driveways, roads, sidewalks and compacted areas of land. These gardens are shaped like depressions in the ground and have well-drained soils that capture and treat runoff with the vegetation, soil and microbes in the garden.
Why build them?
As our cities and towns grow and develop, we modify our streams, wetlands and hillsides with roads, houses and buildings that don’t absorb rainfall and snowmelt like well-vegetated undeveloped areas. As the rain falls and snow melts on these impervious surfaces, the water runs off and picks up sediment and pollutants and carries them straight to our streams. This runoff can increase flooding, damage streambanks and fish habitat, and pollute streams, lakes and estuaries.
Rain gardens capture and treat this stormwater runoff which helps increase groundwater supplies and reduce the negative affects to streams and fish habitat.
Workshops and Training Materials
We offer a variety of workshops and presentations on rain gardens. Our goal is to develop trained Master Gardeners, volunteer gardeners and landscapers in regional locations to help serve as local resources to homeowners wanting to build rain gardens.
We also partner with East Multnomah Soil and Water Conservation District on delivering workshops and creating training materials. View their website for more information.
We have just completed The Oregon Rain Garden Guide, which may downloaded or ordered at the Oregon State Marketplace.