Rain gardens are specifically designed to manage stormwater runoff, mainly from rooftops, but also from driveways, lawns, roads, and parking lots. Rain gardens look like regular perennial gardens, but they are much more. During a storm, a rain garden fills with water, and the water slowly filters into the ground rather than running into storm sewers. Compared to a patch of lawn, a rain garden allows about 30% more water to soak into the ground. Therefore, by capturing stormwater, rain gardens help to reduce nonpoint source pollution (i.e., road sediment/salt, fertilizers, pesticides, bacteria from pet waste, eroded soil, grass clippings, litter, etc.) and help to protect local waterways. Rain gardens also add beauty to neighborhoods and provide wildlife habitat.
Cooperative Extension of Monmouth County