What is a Rain Garden?
A rain garden is a specially designed garden that acts like an undisturbed native forest by collecting, absorbing, and filtering stormwater runoff from hard surfaces like rooftops, driveways, patios, and other areas that don’t allow water to soak into the ground. Rain Gardens can be sized to fit smaller residential and commercial properties, but work best when at least 100 square feet in area. Rain gardens protect and improve water quality, while adding a lovely landscape amenity to your property.
A Little Garden Makes a Big Difference
Carefully placed, designed, and constructed for optimum function – rain gardens are a simple and effective solution for on-site stormwater management. Rain gardens use a proven technique called bio-retention to capture stormwater, filter pollutants and help stormwater soak into the ground. And with a variety of plant choices, they can be designed for year round beauty.
What are the Benefits of a Rain Garden?
Rain gardens can protect water quality and aquatic life in local streams, lakes and Puget Sound by:
Rain Garden Incentive Program
Are you a property owner in unincorporated Thurston County? Are you interested in installing a rain garden in your yard? Thurston County Water Resources is sponsoring a Rain Garden Incentive Program (Program) that will reimburse ten selected applicants for up to $200 upon the successful completion of their rain garden. The incentive is intended for new rain gardens added to existing development. For program details, guidelines and application forms, click here.
Interested in Learning About Building a Rain Garden?
The Washington State University Rain Garden Handbook for
Western Washington Homeowners provides guidance for
designing and building a rain garden. Available online at:
The handbook includes worksheets, templates for developing a planting plan, rain garden plants list and more!
This webpage also contains a 32-minute video: Building a Rain Garden in the Pacific Northwest: Keeping Our Pacific Northwest Waters Clean.
Stream Team offers FREE Rain Gardens Workshops annually. Go to www.streamteam.info and click on Calendar to find out about upcoming workshop dates. Workshop participants receive a FREE copy of the Rain Garden Handbook for Western Washington Homeowners.
Sample Rain Garden Planting Plan
Sample Rain Garden Planting Plan for Sunny Area
Stormwater Stewards Site Visits
Stormwater Stewards are highly trained volunteers who are available to assist residents with site assessments, including the soil percolation test and filling out the Program application. If you need assistance with your application, or if you would like to request Stormwater Stewards to conduct a site evaluation and/or help you to complete the application and rain garden sketch, please call Native Plant Salvage at 360-867-2164 or email Nativeplantsalvage@gmail.com
Visit Local Rain Gardens!
There are several publically accessible rain gardens in Thurston County:
Register Your Rain Garden on the 12,000 Rain Gardens in Puget Sound website
Every rain garden that is installed in the Puget Sound region helps
reduce pollution and flooding.
Click here to register you rain garden.
For more information, contact Ann Marie Pearce at 360-754-3355 ext. 6857 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
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