Rainscaping Practices

What You Can Do

Creating Solutions Through Conservation Practice

Since its creation in 1967, Easter Lake’s water quality has decreased largely due to urban development in its watershed. From 1967-2012, the lake lost nearly 30% of its volume due to sedimentation. 60% of this sediment was attributed to streambank erosion, primarily in Yeader Creek. The culprit of many of these problems is increased stormwater runoff which we can reduce using conservation practices.

There are many ways we can help slow down and capture stormwater. By using conservation practices in strategic locations at our homes and in our community, we can bring back the landscape’s ability to soak up stormwater, improving Easter Lake. These conservation practices can also help fix problems such as poor lawn health, ponding and drainage issues, improve local habitat, and more. Some solutions include soil quality restoration, rain gardens, and rain barrels. 

Residents of the Easter Lake Watershed are eligible for funding to cover up to 75% of the total cost of implementing conservation practices. Do you live within the Easter Lake Watershed? Find out HERE. Funding has been made available by our project partners and is administered by the Polk Soil & Water Conservation District. Pre-approval is required.

Problems

Solutions

What You Can Do

Creating Solutions Through Conservation Practice

Since its creation in 1967, Easter Lake’s water quality has decreased largely due to urban development in its watershed. From 1967-2012, the lake lost nearly 30% of its volume due to sedimentation. 60% of this sediment was attributed to streambank erosion, primarily in Yeader Creek. The culprit of many of these problems is increased stormwater runoff which we can reduce using conservation practices.

There are many ways we can help slow down and capture stormwater. By using conservation practices in strategic locations at our homes and in our community, we can bring back the landscape’s ability to soak up stormwater, improving Easter Lake. These conservation practices can also help fix problems such as poor lawn health, ponding and drainage issues, improve local habitat, and more. Some solutions include soil quality restoration, rain gardens, and rain barrels. 

Residents of the Easter Lake Watershed are eligible for funding to cover up to 75% of the total cost of implementing conservation practices. Do you live within the Easter Lake Watershed? Find out HERE. Funding has been made available by our project partners and is administered by the Polk Soil & Water Conservation District. Pre-approval is required.

Problems

Solutions

Key needs to Improve & Protect Easter Lake

  • Community education & involvement in water quality improvement activities
  • Reduce stormwater runoff throughout the watershed
  • Reduce pollutant loading into Easter Lake, primarily phosphorus & sediment
  • Restore Easter Lake including lake dredging, shoreline stabilization, and fisheries improvements

Easy Ways You Can Help Easter Lake

The driving force behind long-lasting improvements in Easter Lake is us, the community. As lake users and watershed residents we get to see and use the benefits of a healthy Easter Lake, and we have the most power to positively or negatively affect the lake. A Majority of the land in the Easter Lake Watershed is privately owned. As watershed residents we can make improvements at each of our homes to reduce stormwater runoff helping to reduce erosion in Yeader Creek and other creeks, and to stop the transport of pollutants like trash, oils, and phosphorus fertilizers from entering the lake and other waterbodies downstream.

In addition to rainscaping practices, homeowners can improve local water quality by:

  • Picking up pet waste and properly disposing of it
  • Keeping grass clippings and leaves off of impervious surfaces and out of the street storm drains
  • Using phosphorus free fertilizer
  • Reducing or stop using single use plastics like plastic bags, straws, and water bottles
Receive Up To 75% Cost-share

RAINSCAPING PRACTICES

Rainwater Harvesting

Rainwater harvesting is the process of collecting rainwater and storing it for later use. Storage methods can range from small barrels to large underground storage tanks. The simplest way to start rainwater harvesting is to install a rain barrel next to a building that has downspouts collecting roof water. 

Native Landscaping

Native landscaping is the use of vegetation native to a specific ecoregion. These plants are usually more adapt to the climate in the region and provide the most environmental benefit when used. Plants that were part of the tallgrass prairie are referred to as native plants. The native plants of the tallgrass prairie have root systems that can be as deep as 15 feet. These root systems improve the ability of the soil to infiltrate water and withstand erosion.

Soil Quality Restoration

Soil quality restoration (SQR) is the process of improving soil health of new or existing lawns. SQR is a natural lawn care method that can help reduce compaction, improve soils with a high clay content, and help with drainage or ponding issues. The process, which uses a combination of aeration and compost, provides nutrients your grass needs without the use of fertilizers and helps the soil become more like “sponge-like” so it stores more water, reducing your need to water and stormwater runoff.

Permeable Pavers

Permeable pavers are a stormwater management practice used in place of traditional concrete or asphalt to decrease stormwater runoff. Unlike traditional surfaces, permeable pavers allow water to infiltrate into a layer of rock. Water then moves into the soil or to a subsurface drain.

Rain Gardens

A rain garden is a landscaped depression that captures rainwater runoff from roofs, driveways, streets, or parking lots. Runoff captured in a rain garden is temporarily ponded before infiltrating and percolating down through the natural soils. This allows for plants to use the water and for pollutants to be filtered out. Rain gardens can come in many shapes and forms to add an attractive feature to a landscape while also serving a real function helping to manage and treat stormwater runoff.

Bioretention

Bioretention cells treat runoff from impervious surfaces such as streets and parking lots. Bioretention cells (biocells) impound and infiltrate runoff from up to 2 acres of drainage area. The sandy soil media used in a bioretention cell filters the runoff. Pollutants are captured and broken down in the soil media by beneficial microbes. Biocells are used where the existing soils lack an adequate percolation rate.

For Questions Or To Set Up A Site Visit, Contact Your Easter Lake Watershed Coordinator

EASTER LAKE WATERSHED PROJECT PARTNERS

EASTER LAKE WATERSHED PROJECT PARTNERS

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