David Dods Presenting at Rain Garden Workshop

Last week, the Rain Garden Initiative of Toledo – Lucas County put on a two-day Rain Garden Workshop & Training instructed by Rusty Schmidt, a Landscape Ecologist with the Washington County Soil and Water Conservation District, Minneapolis, Minnesota and David Dods, an Environmental Engineer with URS Corporation in Overland Park, Kansas.

The first day was geared towards Master Gardeners and homeowners interested in putting rain gardens in residential areas. They learned the basics of what a rain garden is and also learned about some of the different programs around the Midwest promoting rain gardens like Kansas City’s 10,000 Rain Gardens and Minneapolis’ Metro Blooms. They also had the chance to participate in an installation at Springfield Township Hall, where the workshop was held. I’d have to say that this was the fastest and most efficient installation I have seen. The garden bed was already prepared, so all we had to do was plant, mulch, and add some finishing touches. 

On the second day, Rusty and David along with Kari Mackenbach of URS Corporation, went into more detail about sizing and constructing rain gardens for water quality to engineers, landscape architects, soil and water representatives, and municipal folks. 

Overall, I think the two days went very well and I was pleased with both the amount and quality of questions that were asked by our attendees. It is always great to hear that rain gardens are becoming part of site design plans for larger commercial projects that will be put in place over the next year in Northwest Ohio.