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    Land & Water Conservation - Rain Gardens

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    The order deadline for the 2016 Graham Martin Foundation Rain Garden Plant Sale was March 2016, and plant pickup day was Saturday, June 4th.  Information on the next Graham Martin Foundation Rain Garden Plant Sale will be available on this site in early 2017.  Schools interested in installing a rain garden should call 262-896-8305 to ask about potential funding.  (Above buttons provide plant info.)

    How Can You Have a Rain Garden?
    All the information about planning and installation is found in the "Rain Garden How-To Manual".  Once you have a plan in place, select the plants for your garden.  Choose plants by height, bloom time, color - whatever your preference.  Start by looking through the plant listings above in the tabs.                    

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  • Why build a rain garden?

    • Water that soaks in replenishes groundwater and helps prevent flooding
    • A rain garden protects water quality by trapping sediment, fertilizers and other pollutants
    • Rain gardens need no additional fertilizer and little pesticides
    • Native plants provide food and shelter for butterflies, song birds and other animals

  • A typical rain garden:

    • Is a sunken garden 4-8 inches deep
    • Has a flat bottom
    • Is 1/3 the size of the area draining to it - usually 75-300 square feet in size
    • Can be formal or informal in design
    • Drains within two days, so it does not provide breeding grounds to mosquitoes
    • Is planted with native plants to better infiltrate the water
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  • Why use native plants?

    With roots growing down twice as deep as the plants are tall, native plants are very efficient at absorbing water.  

    Also, each year, 1/3 of the roots die, providing deep tunnels for water to filter into the ground.