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Residential Storm Water Management Tips

Storm water runoff can damage your property and cause problems of soil erosion in your garden or surrounding areas.  Proper management and utilization of storm water will protect your property and your immediate environment.

Storm WaterWilliam Ward / CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

  • Managing the rainwater that runs off your roof will reduce ground erosion in your yard.
  • Storm gutters installed on your home’s roof will help control heavy rains. Check your gutters frequently for leaves or debris that can prevent the rainwater from flowing properly.
  • Direct the downspouts to areas of the yard that can quickly absorb the excess water.
  • You can dig a small trench in these areas and fill with gravel to prevent soil erosion or standing water problems.

Rain Barrels and Rain Gardens

Rain barrels are used for collecting rainwater and provide a source of irrigation. This can be used in lawn maintenance or home gardening. You can create a rain garden that will capture excess water from your driveway or other areas and control the water flow on your property. A rain garden is a small depression in the ground that is meant to hold rainwater for approximately four hours after a one-inch rainfall. This will allow the rainwater to slowly absorb into the ground. Rain gardens help reduce soil erosion and can be made in a short amount of time.

Replace Permeable Paving

Replace concrete walkways, driveways and patios with impervious paved materials. Permeable paving includes interlocking gravel or pavers. This will reduce the amount of standing water that collects around your home. Patios and new construction should be designed so that the water will soak into the ground. Leave gaps between boards and bricks when you construct a new deck. All of these tips will help you reduce the amount of rainwater that collects in your yard. Standing water can also contribute to a mosquito problem.

Plant Beds and Prevent Storm Erosion

Heavy rains and strong winds will cause the soil to shift and erode. If the water doesn’t immediately soak into the ground, then soil erosion can occur. Heavy rainstorms can cause rain to puddle because it doesn’t have time to soak into the ground. Soil erosion can reduce the nutrients found in the soil and this can affect the trees and plants in your yard. To combat this problem, you can plant flower beds in these areas. This will prevent soil erosion because the rainwater can now be absorbed by the new flower beds.

You can also plant ornamental grasses or other plants that are low to the ground and are active throughout the seasons. Add garden matting over the area that is being affected by ground erosion. The garden matting will help to absorb excess water. You can place holes on top of the matting in order to plant your greenery. The matting is another layer of protection from standing water and soil erosion. Add mulching to your flower beds and the areas that are affected by soil erosion.

This will stabilize the soil and prevent the wind and rain from washing it away. Bark or wood chippings are the perfect mulching material. Adding greenery and limiting paved surfaces will go a long way in reducing soil erosion on your property. During heavy rains, storm drains can quickly be overwhelmed and cause street flooding in your neighborhood.

Jake Cristians is a hard-core environmentalist who appreciates the work that is being done by Pinnacle Environmental Technologies to improve the way that storm water is being managed and controlled. For more information on storm water management click here.

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