Our Mission:

Our Mission: To enable individuals and communities to take an active part in the cultivation of systems that provide the highest quality fruits, vegetables, herbs and other yields, in a way that benefits themselves, cares for the land and environment, and provides a surplus to use, share and reinvest into the system.

Sunday, June 21, 2020

Rain Garden in Action

This rain garden was finished a couple weeks ago in Des Moines.
Rain garden ready for runoff

Within a few days we had a good heavy rain and the customer sent me these photo updates.  At 5am the customer was watching water go over the emergency spillway.  This happens when it's rains more than it would 90 percent of the time.  The spillways are installed to maintain the integrity of the construction and designed to prevent point erosion.

Here is the garden at 9am holding a good amount of storm water from rushing into the nearby lake where it would increase the storm surge, along with erosion/sediment and other potential pollutants.
9am  quite a bit of water

By Noon some water had infiltrated but still a lot in there.  Plants are selected for their ability to thrive in both wet and dry conditions.
Noon   water line is dropping

The mulch is still wet at 4pm.  There are probably a few puddles underneath as well.
4pm    only a few puddles and wet mulch

By the next morning the water had infiltrated into the soil and ground water. Now it can slowly make its way to Easter Lake through the water table.
Following morning

This site had passed the infiltration test but still had a fair amount of clay in the soil, so I was happy to see it work right out of the gate.

The Easter Lake Watershed Project even shared the great pictures and this story on Facebook
"10 days ago this rain garden was installed within the Easter Lake Watershed. The 160 SF rain garden temporarily ponds stormwater runoff from a 1405 SF rooftop area. By capturing and helping the water naturally soak into the ground, we reduce runoff and drainage issues in the yard and help to improve water quality downstream in Easter Lake! Our estimates show that this garden can help reduce about 27,000 gallons of stormwater runoff each year! We can’t wait to see this pollinator friendly garden grow!"
If you would like more information about rain gardens and other Stormwater Best Management Practices visit RainCampaign.org or contact us today for a consultation.


Joe finishing up the mulch


Friday, June 19, 2020

#RainCampaign is LIVE

Earlier this year a new collaborative initiative was formed across the Des Moines metro area with the goal of "Enabling People to Protect Water"

"The rain campaign is a localized effort across the Des Moines Metro to enable you to be a part of the solution towards better managing stormwater runoff to improve local water quality through the utilization of municipal cost-share programs." https://raincampaign.org

This rain garden on the home page looks familiar! 
It's one we installed in the Easter Lake Watershed.

Many cities are offering incentives for stormwater best management practices.  You can learn much more at RainCampaign.org or on their Facebook page.

The City of Johnston shared this video where one of our first rain gardens 
shows up in the background fairly often.

Local Channel 5 also highlights the #RainCampaign in Polk County in their video

I encourage you to check it out, and see how you can take steps to ensure clean water for Iowa!

Jeff explains the design & function of this rain garden near Easter Lake last year
to the Polk County Soil & Water Conservation District's intern during a site visit.

This home has a smaller rain garden up front as well as this one in the backyard.