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Rain Gardens Laurie J. Fox Virginia Tech Hampton Roads AREC

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Rain Gardens Laurie J. Fox Virginia Tech Hampton Roads AREC By Any Other Name… rain garden rainscaping catchwater garden bioretention basin infiltration trench or swale BMP – best management practice aesthetic opportunity What Exactly? conservation & preservation tool water

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Presentation Transcript
slide1

Rain

Gardens

Laurie J. Fox

Virginia Tech Hampton Roads AREC

by any other name
By Any Other Name…
  • rain garden
  • rainscaping
  • catchwater garden
  • bioretention basin
  • infiltration trench or swale
  • BMP – best management practice
  • aesthetic opportunity
what exactly
What Exactly?

conservation & preservation tool

water

water quantity
Water Quantity
  • Most abundant resource
  • 97% saltwater
  • Most of 3% in glaciers
  • Very small % in surface and groundwater for humans
water quantity5
Water Quantity
  • Surface - water on or near the earth’s surface (rivers, lakes, springs, storm water)
  • Ground - water in the saturated zone below the water table (aquifer)
water quality

Water Quality

The degree of excellence relative to:

color

odor

suspended solids

nutrients

dissolved oxygen

pathogens (bacteria)

water quantity quality

Water Quantity & Quality

Threatened by:

point and non-point source pollution

through

leaching and runoff

of

sediments, nutrients, toxics

slide9
Sediments - organic & inorganic solid particles
  • Nutrients - N & P
  • Toxics- pesticides,gas, oil, heavy metals, weeds, & pathogens
rain gardens
Rain Gardens
  • Conserve water quantity
  • Preserve water quality
slide11
Why?
  • remove pollutants
  • prevent erosion
  • recharge groundwater
  • prevent flooding
  • provide wildlife habitat
  • less $ alternative to ponds
slide12

Pioneered in Prince George County, MD

  • $2-5K per lot savings
  • additional lots in lieu of storm water ponds
  • no BMP maintenance fees + added value

landscape features

slide13
How?
  • catch rain and runoff water (6” deep)
  • temporarily hold it (< 4 days)
  • soil & plants filter sediments, nutrients, pollutants
  • water percolates down to recharge aquifers
  • water moves into atmosphere through transpiration and evaporation
slide14
How?
  • existing or created depression
  • > 10’ house, 25’ septic field
  • high organic sandy loam soil
  • flood & drought tolerant plants
  • mulch, mulch, mulch
  • Voila! Instant Rain Garden!
slide15

Low

Middle

High

Adams County SWCD

Quincy, IL

  • 3 planting zones
  • 4 days or less
  • 5% of drainage area
  • 6” water
slide19

Flow direction

    • splash block
    • extension pipe
slide21

Sizing the rain garden

  • Depth  Dimensions
    • Ponding depth 6” – Divide Impermeable area by 20
    • Ponding Depth 3” – Divide impermeable area by 10

NCSU

sizing example
Sizing Example
  • Roof area: 60 X 60 = 3600 sq. ft.
  • ¼ of the flow to

downspouts: (3600 sq.ft) X 25% = 900 sq.ft

  • Roof area plus driveway: 900 + 500 = 1400 sq. ft
  • Divide square footage by 20: 1400/20 = 70 sq. ft.

ANSWER: The water garden should be at least

70 square feet.

A 5 x 14 or 7 x 10 foot garden design

would be sufficient

NCSU

slide25

Rain Garden Workshop

Blacksburg, VA

virginia tech rain garden
Virginia Tech Rain Garden
  • Virginia Tech
  • City of Virginia Beach HEC
  • Virginia Cooperative Extension
  • VB MG Water Stewards
  • Local Nurseries & SPSA
  • Local Media
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