Learn about Rain Gardens and Bioswales at RCC

The following is a Press Release put out by Rogue Community College about the project Sustainable Rogue Valley is doing in collaboration with them on the Grants Pass Redwood Campus.


The Rain Garden at RCC after the fall planting day

Grants Pass-Rogue Community College (RCC) and Sustainable Rogue Valley are working together to complete the demonstration Rain Garden and Bioswale on the RCC Redwood Campus to show how to help protect stormwater pollution from fouling freshwater ecosystems.

The demonstration project at the RCC Redwood Campus is located next to the Josephine Building at 3345 Redwood Highway in Grants Pass. Volunteers are needed to help complete the project. Anyone who wants to get involved and experience this project firsthand is invited to join the Sustainable Rogue Valley group at the Josephine Building parking lot on:

  • Friday, Feb. 16, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., to complete wetland and flower planting.
  • Friday, March 16, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., to construct a trail designed to encourage people to walk and discover the project.
  • Earth Day, Thursday, April 19, at noon and 1 p.m., there will be tours of the site.

RCC’s demonstration rain garden collects rainwater runoff from impervious landscapes such as parking lots and roads and filters the water through a bioswale using unique wetland plants and organic matter that acts as a sponge that holds and breaks down contaminants and pollutants while letting water seep into the ground or enter natural drainage systems. With a healthy and varied plant community, rain gardens can produce a pleasing environment while providing a vital function in the watershed.

Signs are posted on-site to explain the project and its goals, the pattern of runoff, types of wetland plants, and how bioswales improve watershed health. “We hope this demonstration site will inspire others to build rain gardens and bioswales to improve water quality and beautify the landscape,” said Charles Rogers, the RCC science instructor managing the project.

This project has been funded by the Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board to construct the drainage basin and filling it with mulch. The local Williams Creek Watershed Council completed that stage during the summer of 2017. Additional funding was provided by the RCC Foundation and Ashland Food Co-op for plants and materials to complete the rain garden.

Sustainable Rogue Valley is a local group dedicated to fostering sustainable practices through community service and education.

Individuals and local groups interested in getting involved in planting, shaping and maintaining this active demonstration project can visit www.sustainableroguevalley.org for more information. If you would like to help with completing the rain garden, contact Rogers at crogers@roguecc.edu.

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