Central Ohio Rain Garden Initiative (CORGI) is working with several local garden centers to promote native plants and rain gardens. Check out our displays at Kurtz Bros. nursery in Westerville, Oakland Nursery in Clintonville, and Scioto Gardens in Delaware County.

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Slow it down & clean it up

Modern landscapes are covered with buildings, pavement, and compacted soil that impair stormwater drainage. In  urban settings, rain and snowmelt do not soak into the ground effectively, but instead drain off these hard surfaces quickly and contribute to poor water quality.

Preventing runoff from going into a typical curb and gutter stormwater system reduces pollutants that are carried directly to our local waterways, sewage overflows in combined sewers or older sanitary  sewers, and stream bank erosion. Keeping water where it falls is the most effective way to reduce runoff. Rain gardens absorb 30% more water than the same size area of lawn, and have proven very effective at filtering and removing pollutants including nitrogen, phosphorus, and metals.

If you plant it, they will come

Native plants are those that existed in the landscape pre-settlement, and they’ve weathered many winters, survived heat, drought, rain, and temperature fluctuations that characterize the lower Midwest. They’ve also developed complex relationships with insects (bees, butterflies, beetles, and flies) that are critical to ecosystem function, serving as pollinators and decomposers, and an important food source especially for amphibians, reptiles, and birds.

Perennial prairie plants work especially well in rain gardens because their deep roots create channels for water to move through. These same long roots can find water during hot summers, making natives a low-maintenance selection that require little water.

Bring it home

Gardeners are very aware of conservation measures such as water-conscious landscaping, and want to use beneficial native plants. The Gardening for Clean Water program allows us to reach interested individuals through nurseries, and provide them with resources.

As 80% of land is privately owned, citizens play an important role in improving habitat and water quality by making informed land use choices. CORGI strives to make installing a rain garden easy.

This garden center was selected for this project because of its interest and capability in providing information about conservation measures regarding soil erosion and water quality. Its employees are trained to provide all the guidance and plants you need. Whether your interest is in stream health, native plants, or butterfly habitat, a rain garden is your garden.

Dig in and plant today!