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July 27, 2017 – The city has received grants from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and the Chesapeake Bay Foundation to be used for rain garden installations and workshops.
The more than $25,000 National Fish and Wildlife grant went towards garden installations at Air Power Park, Spratley Gifted Center, Bluebird Gap Farm and First Baptist Church. This grant also included $7,500 for the creation of a living shoreline at Bluebird Gap Farm.
The city matched the grant by contributing staff time, space and other resources.
The gardens capture run-off from hard surfaces of buildings near gutters, driveways and streets. The process is a combination of digging out existing soil and replacing it with a bioretention soil mix – sand, topsoil, compost – and planting native plants.
Rain gardens are a great solution for problematic areas that collect water after a rain event, Liz Ronston of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation said.
The Chesapeake Bay Foundation, through the Hampton River Watershed Grant, has also given the city $50,000 to install two larger roadside gardens. One has been completed at North King Street and Mercury Boulevard and another will be located in the Hampton Roads Center Parkway median.
The foundation will also host three free rain garden workshops that are open to the public. The workshops will teach participants effective ways to enhance property, manage rainwater onsite and help improve water quality.
The workshops will be held:
To register contact Charlene Ihrig at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 757-809-2901.