What is a Rain Garden?
- A rain garden is a garden of native flowers, shrubs and other plants used in a small depression designed to temporarily hold and then soak in rainwater.
What are the Benefits of Rain Gardens?
- Stormwater runoff carries fertilizer, pesticides, pet waste, engine oil, deicing salts and other contaminants directly into local streams. Stormwater causes flash flooding which erodes stream banks destroying habitat and altering the natural flow of the streams.
- A rain garden soaks up rainwater runoff from roofs, driveways, walkways and compacted lawn areas.
- Rain gardens remove up to 90 percent of nutrient and chemical pollutants and soak up 30 percent more water than an equivalent patch of lawn.
Where do I put my rain garden?
- Choose an area where you want to soak up rainwater, at least 10 feet from the house.
- Rain gardens can catch water from downspouts as well as water that drains off roads and walkways.
- Do not place a rain garden in areas that are consistently wet. Rain gardens should drain completely within 24 hours (Refer to Penn State Extension link listed below).
- Before you dig, call PA One Call (800-242-1776) to locate underground utility lines.
Choosing the Right Plants
- The rain garden has areas that range from very wet to dry.
- Choose plants suited for those areas and plant them close together.
- Find Penn State recommended plants at https://extension.psu.edu/rain-gardens-the-plants
What about mosquitoes?
- A rain garden is not a pond and should drain within 24 hours, which is not long enough to allow mosquitoes to breed.
For More Information
For a comprehensive guide to rain gardens, see the following:
- Lower Gwynedd Township Environmental Advisory Council at Lower Gwynedd Township EAC
- Penn State Extension at https://extension.psu.edu/an-introduction-to-rain-gardens
- Rutgers University Rain Garden manual at http://water.rutgers.edu/Rain_Gardens/RGWebsite/RainGardenManualofNJ.html
- University of Connecticut Rain Gardens at https://nemo.uconn.edu/raingardens/
- Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources at https://dnr.wi.gov/topic/shorelandzoning/documents/rgmanual.pdf
Source: Haverford Township Environmental Advisory Committee
In 2018, the Lower Gwynedd Township Environmental Advisory Council (EAC) initiated a battery recycling program through Battery Solutions. This program ensures that end-of-life management of batteries from collection to recycling is done in a compliant manner with respect to the environment. The battery collection tube is conveniently located in the vestibule of the township building for easy drop-off.
- 371 total pounds of batteries were recycled and included the following categories:
- Alkaline/Zinc Carbon-116: 309 pounds
- Alkaline-127 (Large): 52 pounds
- Mixed Buttons: 10 pounds
- 643 pounds of batteries were recycled thus far and include the following categories:
- Alkaline/Zinc Carbon: 605 pounds
- Lithium: 5 pounds
- Nickel Metal Hydride: 6 pounds
- Lead VRLA Small- 201: 27 pounds
For more information and to learn about the benefits of battery recycling and the types of batteries we accept, please visit the Battery Solutions website @ https://www.batterysolutions.com
EAC NEWS & EVENTS
Save Your Batteries!
And bring them to the township building for recycling! The Lower Gwynedd Environmental Advisory Council installed a battery receptacle in the breezeway and invites township residents to dispose of your household batteries there rather than sending them to the landfill.
Household batteries include standard alkaline, nickel cadium (NiCd), lithium, button batteries and more (no car batteries!). Some small electronics like cell phones are also accepted.
Please see specific instructions (you may need to tape and/or bag certain batteries) and a list of acceptable batteries at the receptacle, which is located next to the prescription medicine receptacle in the breezeway of the township building.
Growing Greener Basin Naturalization Project- Phase 2
Lower Gwynedd Township began Phase 2 of the Basin Naturalization Project, which is funded through the Growing Greener Grant. The two Township-owned basins located in the open space area of the Spring House Farms Development were retrofitted as part of this project. The slideshow below was presented by the EAC to give a background and overview of the entire project.
Spotted Lanternfly (SLF) Information
Below are numerous links to articles, websites, guides, etc. all pertaining to the Spotted Lanternfly that the Lower Gwynedd Township's Environmental Advisory Council has compiled. These links are meant to provide helpful and factual information to the residents of Lower Gwynedd Township.
Other Helpful Environmental Articles and Links:
Welcome to Bird Town!
What Do Those Signs Mean?
By Steven Saffier, Audubon Pennsylvania
Lower Gwynedd township has become the 24th Audubon Bird Town in Pennsylvania and the fifth in Montgomery County. The Township’s Environmental Advisory Council, will work closely with Audubon Pennsylvania and community partners to provide information to residents on ways to create healthier, more sustainable and bird-friendly landscapes while addressing issues such as stormwater management and pesticide usage.
The township is in the Wissahickon watershed, an area of land that contains quality habitat and a critical part of the Atlantic Flyway, the super-highway of bird migration. Lower Gwynedd, with its open space, trail system, and wooded developments, provides rich resources to wildlife and opportunities for people experience nature in their backyard and beyond.
Homes and other properties can be an important part of healthy habitat and can be recognized through Audubon’sBird Habitat Network; residents can register their property, learn more about how to care for the nature around them, and receive incentives such as a business discount card. Homeowners can go to http://pa.audubon.org and select the “register your yard” button to start. There is useful information on the website to help you improve your ecological footprint.
Stewardship workshops, bird walks, and other presentations are being scheduled for Bird Town residents. Please check the website and be sure to like us on Facebook (birdtownpa) where updates are posted.
To educate, facilitate and promote sustainable practices within Lower Gwynedd Township and the greater community through educational workshops and programs, articles and community events.
Who We Are:
Lower Gwynedd Township residents dedicated to ensuring a greater quality of life for our community through educational outreach, involvement and best practices.
Contact us at EAC@lowergwynedd.org.
Like us on Facebook
Current Program Development
- Organize and offer stormwater management events:
- Rain barrel workshops and giveaways
- Native plant giveaways and corresponding outreach
- Develop articles regarding sustainable practices for inclusion in the spring and fall township newsletters
- Provide “how to” steps and information regarding stormwater management practices on township website
- Promote the Four Rs: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, and Recover
- Educational outreach to encourage residents, schools and businesses to promote sustainable practices
- Support Lower Gwynedd Township's annual e-waste collection events
- Promote the use of reusable water bottles and cloth shopping bags
- Encourage active participation in wildlife habitat creation and preservation
- Provide stormwater management awareness and education
- Support the recycling efforts of businesses in Lower Gwynedd Township:
- "I Like the Pike"
- Revitalization in accordance with sustainable / green infrastructure practices
- Partner with Wissahickon School District on sustainable projects with the goal of student body involvement
- Battery recycling program
INITIATIVES AND ACCOMPLISHMENTS
Growing Greener Watershed Protection Grant:
- Facilitated application for 2016 Growing Greener grant
- Educational outreach pertaining to Basin Naturalization Projects / Rain Garden
Spotted Lanternfly (SLF) Management Options:
- Management options for homeowners/businesses
- Walks and talks regarding the SLF
Naturalized Landscapes and Education Outreach:
- Low maintenance homeowner lawn care practices
- Promote benefits of native plants and removal of invasive plant species
- Encourage active wildlife habitat creation and preservation
- Benefits of pollinators/ensuring their survival
- Native plant plug and tree giveaways
- Mike McGrath (You Bet Your Garden) presentation/ community event on organic and sustainable lawn care practices
- Planted native tree species on Ingersoll / Clayton House
- Provided instruction on proper composting techniques, tree planting and care
- Outreach to residents, schools and businesses to promote sustainable practices
- Promote use of reusable water bottles and cloth shopping bags
- Support township’s annual e-waste collection events
- Partner with Wissahickon School District and student body on sustainable projects
- Establish outreach through Facebook page
Birds and Bird Town:
- Conduct bird walks at Penllyn Woods and Christmas bird counts at Treweryn Farm Trail
- Established township as an Audubon Society-designated Bird Town in 2015
Like us on Facebook
Lower Gwynedd Township
1130 N Bethlehem Pike
PO Box 625
Spring House, PA 19477
Phone: (215) 646-5302
Fax: (215) 646-3357