Owensville, Ohio. Thanks to a grant received from the Duke Energy Foundation, the Clermont Soil & Water Conservation District (SWCD), along with staff, students, and adults at the Thomas A. Wildey Center will be planting a new rain garden on June 2, beginning at 10 a.m. The rain garden will help treat storm water runoff from the front parking lot and will also provide enjoyment for everyone who visits the Wildey Center. The Wildey Center provides services for people from birth to adulthood with disabilities.
Clermont SWCD teamed with Greenacres Foundation to design the garden. Special attention was given to selecting plants that will engage the senses of the students. “We included several plants that will attract birds and butterflies, including Swamp Milkweed and Blue Columbine. Some of the flowers have a very nice fragrance, like Little Joe Pye, and others have interesting textures, such as Fountain Grass and Prairie Phlox leaves,” said John McManus, Clermont SWCD Administrator.
Jo Praschak, Specialized Training Coordinator for the Wildey Community Integration Program, said “We are excited about the rain garden because it will give the individuals an opportunity to interact in a natural environment and will foster a sense of accomplishment and well-being. It has been our experience that when individuals get to be a part of nature, it increases their positive feelings and level of contentment.”
The Garden at the Wildey Center is the second demonstration rain garden created under the Duke Energy Foundation grant – the first one was planted at Union Township’s Veterans Park just before Memorial Day weekend. “Duke Energy enjoys working with creative partners like the Clermont Soil & Water Conservation District,” said Warren Walker, Community and Government Relations specialist for Duke Energy. “Combining an environmental friendly solution along with an outdoor STEM lab is a beneficial project. We appreciate the District’s expertise and their ability to promote the use of rain gardens throughout Clermont County by installing these demonstration gardens. Duke Energy values the communities in which we serve, and appreciates our strong partnerships with organizations like Clermont Soil & Water.”
For more information on rain gardens, contact the Clermont Soil & Water Conservation District at 513-732-7075, or visitwww.clermontswcd.org.