Rainwater Management

Fresh water is one of our most precious natural resources and we rely on it for our everyday lives. To help preserve this valuable resource, here are a few suggestions to manage rainwater.

Build Permeable Pavements

This exterior flooring is an excellent alternative to asphalt driveways and concrete patios as it allows rainwater to infiltrate the soil and go back to the groundwater source instead of being directed into the sewer system. Bricks, pavers, slate and loose stone also work well for this purpose.

Add Collection Barrels

Harvesting rainwater for reuse has been around for ages. Set up barrels around the downspouts of your gutters and let the runoff from your roof collect in them. The water is ideal for watering plants, mixing concrete or just cleaning off the deck. If you are worried about insect larvae, just add a spoonful of bleach after every rainfall.

Install Infiltration Trenches

Primarily seen on commercial properties, these stone-filled ditches can also be quite valuable on residential properties with large changes in elevations. Typically installed at the base of a terraced area or the perimeter of a hill, they allow rainwater runoff to collect underground and then slowly percolate into the ground.

Create a Rain Garden

A natural depression in your landscape where rainwater is already accumulating is an ideal spot for this resource preservation technique. The trick is to use the right plants - that is, plants that are tolerant of abundant water. They will then help filter the rainwater runoff and recharge the groundwater table.

Green Roofs

This may seem like an ambitious project but a homeowner with a flat roof can start small and add to his rooftop garden every year - it can be as simple as a vegetable or flower garden. Not only will a green roof slow stormwater runoff, it will also lower your heating bills in the summer.