Rain Gardens Growing

Two rain gardens created at the intersection of Belmont and Forest in Toledo’s Junction Avenue neighborhood are healthy in their first full year of growth. In 2016, TMACOG contracted Schoen, Inc. to construct the rain gardens. Construction involved grading work, removal of a basement foundation that had been buried during a past housing demolition, and placement of underdrains and engineered soils. TMACOG worked with Mannik & Smith Group on project oversight and landscape design and the plantings were completed by A&J Landscaping. Total project costs were near $200,000 and the project was paid for through a grant from Ohio EPA and the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative. After almost a year, the gardens are thriving. The City of Toledo is keeping an eye on them, weeding and tidying the area.

This deep rain garden captures and treats stormwater runoff from streets and sidewalks on Belmont Avenue. Additionally, water from the downspouts at a neighboring house are re-directed to the garden area. (See the blue pipe at the top right). Stones slow down the flow of water from the pipe, preventing erosion. Directing stormwater to the garden areas reduces street flooding and keeps stormwater out of the sewage system. In the garden, water percolates naturally through the soil, feeding plants.

Plants that are adapted to conditions of both flood and drought include Rudbeckia (black-eyed Susan) in lower right, and Eutrochium dubium (little Joe-Pye weed),
the tall purple flowers.

Pollinators were busy in the Junction Neighborhood rain
gardens in mid-August. This monarch butterfly was attracted
to Asclepias tuberosa, or butterfly weed.

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