Rain gardens are a great landscape design feature that is not only attractive but also works as a natural filter to clean water. At Jovak Landscape and Design, we understand how something as simple as a rain garden can help keep your landscaping healthy all year round. Here are some simple tips on how to design a rain garden for your front yard landscaping or backyard landscaping.
A rain garden is a garden bed that you plant with special deep-rooted species that can help water rapidly seep into the soil, away from your house. In order to direct the rainwater from the downspout to the rain garden, you will have to install a swale or plastic piping. The garden will then capture the water and drain it into the soil within a day. Rain gardens can also help improve water quality in nearby bodies of water by reducing the amount of lawn chemicals and pet wastes that may otherwise runoff into local lakes and rivers.
In order to create proper water flow into your rain garden, you will need to ensure that your yard has a minimum slope of 1 inch in 4 1/2 feet. Some of the things that you should keep in mind when choosing a location for your rain garden include:
To determine the ideal depth for your rain garden, you will first need to test the porosity of your soil (a garden dug in sandy, well-draining soil can be deeper than a garden dug in poorly draining clay). To do this, you can dig a hole in your garden area the size and depth of a large coffee can and fill it with water. If the water level drops by 1/2 inch in one hour, you can figure that the soil will drain an inch of water in two hours. At this rate, the garden soil should be able to handle 12 inches of water in a 24-hour period, making the ideal depth of this garden 12 inches.
The best way to determine the size of your rain garden is to estimate the volume of water that would flow off the roof and down the spout that will feed your garden; however, it is okay to vary the size of your rain garden to fit your landscape design. A small rain garden can still yield big benefits.
If you would like to learn more about how to design a rain garden and landscape design, or if you are interested in one of our services, please contact Jovak Landscape and Design at 604-835-2850 or by filling out a contact form on our website. You can also stay up to date with the latest landscaping news by following us on Facebook.