New rain garden at Thoreau School survives storm

A new rain garden was just finished at Thoreau School, to reduce runoff from the roof and paved playground.  Construction was organized by Jack Nolan for his Eagle Scout project.  But Jack was out of town when the dark clouds rolled in, so I was scheduled to watch the garden.

On the evening of June 12, there were at least three episodes of heavy rain.  The fledgling garden was under siege!

The garden was built with multiple silt socks, to withstand storms while the plants become established.

Knowing a severe storm was coming, I beefed things up.
Much of the water bypassed the upper gardens under the tree--as designed.

But the lowest garden was at risk, because a berm there forms a large, deep pool.  The pool could overflow, washing out the berm.

I managed to deflect about half the water coming down the swale.

Nevertheless, the lower pool filled to within 6" of the top.  But it didn't overflow, so almost no damage was done to any part of the garden--except for the plants looking a bit muddy.

The highest garden (below)--constructed by Stephanie Robinson and colleagues last year--overflowed again, with some damage to the berm.

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