Rain Gardens

Rain gardens are a great way to protect the water quality of Lake Champlain.

A rain garden is a depressed vegetated area that captures rain water runoff from nearby impervious surfaces such as roads, sidewalks, driveways, and roofs.  Rain water flows into the garden where it can then slowly soak through the ground, allowing the filtering of pollutants, absorption of nutrients, and breakdown of pesticides by microorganisms.

Properly installed and maintained rain gardens have numerous benefits, including:

  • Decreasing sediment runoff into lakes, steams, and wetlands;
  • Reducing shoreline damage by slowing rushing waters;
  • Protecting groundwater resources;
  • Reducing flooding caused by storm drain overflows;
  • Providing wildlife habitat; and
  • Enhancing the beauty of the built environment.

Are you ready to start planting a rain garden in your yard?  View our How to Build a Rain Garden brochure for tips and instructions.

Additional Resources:

Extensive diagrams and instructions:
University of WI Extension

Short fact sheet on rain gardens:
Rutgers Cooperative Research and Extension

Rain garden manual including recommended plants:
Winooski Natural Resources Conservation District