May 3, 2012
By Stewardship Partners
The front yard of a Puyallup home appears as it was in 2009 before a rain garden was designed and installed in a project spearheaded by Stewardship Partners and Washington State University Extension.
In the first step of creating a rain garden, it is located (in this case by Mark Howard with Landmark Landscaping) based on the dictates of best drainage, soil and sunlight on the property.
In the second step of creating a rain garden, it is designed and built with soil excavation, making a soil-compost mix to fill in the excavation, creating a water entry and a rock-lined overflow.
In the third step of creating a rain garden, it is planted with a variety of small trees, shrubs, herbs or grasses selected based on the water they need. Then the garden is mulched and watered (here by the homeowner) to establish the roots.
In the fourth step, the rain garden, seen here one year after its planting, is maintained through ongoing mulching, weeding, watering as needed and the avoidance of fertilizer or pesticides.