What is a rain garden?
A rain garden is a depression created in your landscape to allow rainwater from your roof or driveway to slowly soak into the ground instead of running off into the nearest stream or Puget Sound.
Native soils are removed and replaced with a special blend of high organic soil, bioretention and mulch. Rain gardens are then planted with beautiful, hardy, low-maintenance native perennial plants, which can withstand drought and wet root conditions.
Upcoming Workshops and Events
Ready to tackle your water issues?
Learn how at this free class taught by a Design Engineer and a seasoned Farm Planner from Snohomish Conservation District.
Photo credit: Alayne Blickle
Join experts from both King and Snohomish Conservation District in this special workshop designed to increase your rain garden know-how and improve mud management on rural, livestock, and horse properties.
Yard care specialists will provide advice for getting the most out of every drop.
Why build a rain garden?
Rain gardens are highly engineered to provide environmental benefits, but don't let that fool you. They are also beautifully landscaped garden features that:
- Enhance the landscaping and appearance of homes and yards
- Provide habitat for beneficial insects and birds
- Filter oil and grease from driveways, pesticides, and fertilizers from lawns, and other pollutants before they reach groundwater or the storm drain and eventually streams, wetlands, lakes and marine waters
- Filter runoff from agricultural land to help prevent pollutants like manure from washing into our waterways
- Reduce flooding on neighboring property, overflows in sewers, and erosion in streams by absorbing runoff from hard surfaces
- Increase the amount of water that soaks into the ground to recharge local groundwater
How do I build a rain garden?
Qualified properties in Snohomish County and on Camano Island are eligible to receive funding (cost share) from the Snohomish Conservation District, which can help you pay for your rain garden. Contact our Community Conservation Team at email@example.com to learn more.
There are many resources available to homeowners who want to build rain gardens on their own.
This video provides an overview of the rain garden construction process from beginning to end.
Rain Garden Handbook (PDF)
Produced jointly by the Washington State Department of Ecology and WSU Extension, this handbook includes all the information you will need to plan and build your own rain garden.
These two guides will help you take care of your rain garden after it has been installed. Download the first link for a more in-depth explanation of what your rain garden needs, and print out the second one to hang on your fridge to remind you at-a-glance!
This regional initiative has many great resources to learn more about rain gardens and where to find professional help if you live anywhere in the Puget Sound.
Rain Garden News
Our largest rain garden has finally been planted. Check out how small it makes our Vet Crew seem.
This Camano Island rain garden is doing triple duty, filtering water from three different sources: rainwater from the sky, runoff from the roof, and surface water from the uphill slope.
Here are another six completed rain gardens in the City of Everett. Want one for your property? Contact the City of Everett and inquire about their rain garden rebate program.
Seeking artist /carpenter for rain arbor. Contact Derek at 425-377-7012 if interested.
A community came together and our Vet Crew did the work.
This June we had the opportunity to complete several best management practices (BMPs) at the Holly Farm in Bothell, WA in the Little Bear Creek Watershed.
Here is a unique project to slow upland flow of materials using compost socks.
We recently completed a rain garden on at Bay View United Methodist Church in Mount Vernon just above Padilla Bay.
Got a question about rain gardens? Contact our Community Conservation Team by clicking below or by emailing us at ccteam(at)snohomishcd.org