Garden Tour 2014

6. Residential Rain Garden

Water down the drain? Not here! This homeowner has taken a very progressive and river friendly approach to their garden, it collects rain water. Unlike traditional homes that capture rainwater in their rain gutters, drain it to the street and then to the public storm drain system; the rain water from the rooftop of this home is collected in the rain gutters and then drained to a rain garden.

‘What’s the purpose of that?’, you might ask. A rain garden is a small collection and retention area within the garden that allows rain water to collect and slowly percolate back through the soil and recharge our ground water system. Mathematical calculations were made using the surface area of the roof to determine the volume of rain water received during a 10 year storm. The rain garden was then designed to accommodate this volume of water. If a larger storm were to occur, then excess water would drain to the gutter like traditional homes.

The landscape is also aesthetically pleasing with the use of a dry-stacked stone wall to create elevated interest, slate pavers to provide a secondary pathway through the garden and black Mexican river pebbles as a smooth textured mulch in the foreground. Plant species are also indicative of river-friendly and water conserving selections.

For more information on residential rain gardens, visit the City of Elk Grove’s Rain Garden Plaza located behind city hall on Laguna Springs Drive or or do a search for residential rain gardens.

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