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Overwatering Is Out

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Smart Landscaping Saves More Than Just Water

Last week we talked about how incredibly effective rain gardens and swales can be in reducing runoff. Combined with the simplicity of permeable surfaces that we talked about, stormwater runoff can be reduced by up to 90%! That certainly saves a lot of water, but it can also save money and increase the value of your home. Even better, this isn’t theory, our gneighbors to the gnorth have done it.

The Elmer Avenue Neighborhood Retrofit was highlighted in last week’s video. The retrofit took a neighborhood street that was constantly flooding and used all of the tactics we talk about here to tackle the problem. Through swales, rain gardens, California Friendly plants, and low-tech solutions, the neighborhood:

  • Infiltrates (i.e. absorbs into the soil) 5.4 million gallons of stormwater annually that used to go into local waterways;
  • Reduces pollutants in the water by passing them through a catch basin sump; and
  • Increases carbon soil sequestration by 600%!

Those are the environmental benefits. The project also:

  • Saves each homeowner $120-360 annually by reducing the need for watering by sprinklers;
  • Increased resident satisfaction with the neighborhood’s walkability from 2% to 92%; and
  • Increased the value of homes by up to 10%!

Now check out these before and after shots or read more about the project here.

before-after

Remember, even if you can’t get your entire gneighborhood to undertake a retrofit, you can transform your home and do your part.

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