Inspection And Maintenance Maintaining Your Rain Garden

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INSPECTION AND MAINTENANCEMAINTAINING YOUR RAIN GARDEN

MAINTENANCE MEASURESWEEKLY TASKS:ANNUAL ingMulchingPruningRe-plantingRemoving sedimentSoil TestingHarvesting PlantsCleaning of GuttersReplacing materials(stone, landscape fabric)

WEEKLY MAINTENTANCE:WATERING Water plants regularly – particularly during the first1-2 growing seasons Be careful that the plants don’t get too wet or too dry

WEEKLY MAINTENANCE:WEEDING During the first few years, youwill need to weed often duringthe growing season You will need to weed less andless as the plants grow andsurpass the weeds Watch out for aggressiveinvasive species

INVASIVE PLANTSIN NEW JERSEYJapaneseStilt GrassAsianBittersweetMultifloraRoseGarlic vespeciesinfo.gov/unitedstates/nj.shtml

WEEKLY MAINTENANCE:INSPECTING What am I inspecting for? Invasive plantsPlant healthExcessive sedimentMovement of sedimentwithin the rain garden

WEEKLY MAINTENANCE:INSPECTING Observe the rain garden during rain events and noteany successesoil greasevisible inrunoffSuccess: Stormwater runoff picks up oil andgrease from the parking lot, flows through acurb cut, and into a rain garden. The raingarden traps the nonpoint source pollutantsbefore they reach the nearby lake.

WEEKLY MAINTENANCE:INSPECTING Observe the rain garden during rain events and noteany problemsProblem: Gullying after rain eventSolution: Add a berm, more plants, river rocks,and/or more mulch

WEEKLY MAINTENANCE:INSPECTING Observe the rain garden during rain events and noteany problemsProblem: Rain garden is not infiltrating Solution: Add sand wicks, preferably 1’ deep ifwithin 24 hourspossible, and fill with pockets of coarse sand

MAINTENANCE MEASURESWEEKLY TASKS:ANNUAL ingMulchingPruningRe-plantingRemoving sedimentSoil TestingHarvesting PlantsCleaning of GuttersReplacing materials(stone, landscape fabric)

ANNUAL MAINTENANCE:MULCHING Add mulch every spring to maintain a three inch mulchlayer in your rain garden

ANNUAL MAINTENANCE:PRUNING Cut back dead vegetation, flowers, and tattered orunwieldly plants

ANNUAL MAINTENANCE:PRUNING Directs plant growth Improves plant health Increases production of flowers fruit

Measures: RequiredHOW DOESMaintenancePRUNINGA RAIN GARDENDIFFER FROM OTHER GARDENS? In a rain garden, dense shrub growth is encouraged toprovide an increase in filtering capacity

MaintenanceMeasures:RequiredTYPESOFPRUNING THINNING: This type of pruning removes entirebraches back to the main trunk or major branches tothe ground.Expected result: large, open shrub HEADING (HEADING BACK): This type of pruningremoves only part of a branch.Expected result: growth of multiple branches in place ofsingle branch, thus a more dense shrub. DEADHEADING: This type of pruning removes thespent flowers of an herbaceous plant.Expected result: increased blooming throughout theseason.

Maintenance TOMeasures:RequiredWHENPRUNE? Prune summer and fall flowering trees and shrubs in thedormant season (late winter/early spring) Prune spring flowering trees and shrubs soon after their flowersfade SPECIAL NOTE! Plants such as hydrangeas and roses - some ofthese flower in spring, some in summer or fall, some flowerrepeatedly BE CAREFUL! Avoid pruning plants betweenJuly 15th – October 15th, as it stimulates newgrowth that may not be able to withstand thehard frosts in October

ANNUAL MAINTENANCE:REMOVING SEDIMENT Since the rain garden serves the purpose of catchmentand filtering runoff, sediment will tend to accumulatewithin the garden. This sediment would have otherwiserun directly into the local waterways.

ANNUAL MAINTENANCE:REMOVING SEDIMENT With a flat shovel, remove soil that has accumulated in the basin. Avoid thevegetation! There is no exact schedule for when this should be done. Try to monitorsediment accumulation, especially after all heavy storm events. Be sure that sediment is not churning upfrom exposed areas of the rain garden.Flow should be dissipated to avoid thesesituations, which are likely to occur in theearly stages of stabilization. Core aerate or cultivate bare areas annuallyif surface becomes clogged with fine sediments.

ANNUAL MAINTENANCE:REPLANTING Remove or replace plant material that did not thrive

ANNUAL MAINTENANCE:SOIL TESTING Soil should be tested every 3 years pH should be in the acidic range– If pH is 5.2, apply limestone– If pH is 7.0 to 8.0, add aluminumsulfate or sulfur to reduce pHaccording to recommendations Soil amendments should only beadded when no storms are expected Do not fertilize the rain gardenunless soil test results show aserious nutrient deficiency

MaintenanceMeasures: RequiredANNUALMAINTENANCE:HARVESTING PLANTS Take cuttings, divide, and/or collect seeds fromsuccessful plants in the rain garden and use themin other parts of your landscape

MaintenanceMeasures: RequiredANNUALMAINTENANCE:CLEANING GUTTERS At least once a year, make surethat any gutters connected tothe rain garden are clear ofdebris You may have to clean thegutters more frequently if youhave large trees in closeproximity

MaintenanceMeasures: RequiredANNUALMAINTENANCE:REPLACING MATERIALS Add more river rocks, if necessary Re-position river rocks that may be diverting rainwater flow Landscape fabric (used only in strategic locations) will need to bereplaced after about 10 years Add mulch Re-seed the berm if there areareas of exposed soil

BEFORE and AFTERMAINTENANCEBEFOREAFTER

A RAIN GARDEN OVER TIME

REMEMBER: rain gardens are LOW maintenancegardens, not NO maintenance gardens!

Japanese Stilt Grass Garlic Mustard Japanese Honeysuckle Mugwort Multiflora Rose . within the rain garden WEEKLY MAINTENANCE: INSPECTING . WEEKLY MAINTENANCE: INSPECTING Success: Stormwater runoff picks up oil and grease from the parking lot, flows through a curb cut, and into a rain garden. The rain garden traps the nonpoint source pollutants

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