How-to guide for small scale residential or commercial rain gardens.
The term “rain garden” has risen in popularity over the last decade. This catch-all term has been used to describe anything from a very expensive and highly engineered system designed to handle an exact quantity of volume, to a low-cost planting of water-tolerant species in a perennially soggy spot in the yard.
This manual will specifically cover the installation of a type of rain garden termed an “existing soil rain garden.” These are rain gardens whose original soils have been amended solely for healthy plant establishment. This is countered by the “engineered rain garden” whose existing soils have been replaced or heavily amended with a specified soil mix to a depth greater than 1’. With existing soil rain gardens landscapers look at rain gardens as “landscaping with rain.” These rain gardens work with the site conditions to design and install a garden that is primarily designed around rain. (2014) by the Illinois Landscape Contractors Association.