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SWCD update: Class helps grow gardens

Would you like to beautify your yard with showstopping flower blooms and grasses while protecting our lakes and streams, and attracting songbirds, hummingbirds and beneficial pollinators like bees and butterflies?

If you said yes, we encourage you to think about installing a pollinator rain garden on your property. A pollinator rain garden is a small, depressional garden that collects rainwater from your roof, lawn, driveway and other impervious surfaces before it ends up in our groundwater, storm sewers, nearby streams and lakes. Rain gardens are designed to drain within 48 hours and include a diversity of deep-rooted showy native flowers, grasses and shrubs.

These plants are selected for beautiful blooms spring, summer and fall to provide critical habitat and food sources for our bees, butterflies, songbirds and many other types of wildlife. Not to mention, they are aesthetically pleasing, low-cost, and low-maintenance. Pollinator rain gardens do not require fertilizing, regular mowing or irrigation, and have a positive effect on the soil. Their extensive fibrous root systems, which can grow down to 15 feet, reduce erosion, restore soil health, and filter runoff before it enters streams, lakes and groundwater.

If this interests you but you don't know where to start, you still have time to attend a free rain garden workshop 6-7:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 5 at Hermantown City Hall.

Instructors will teach you step-by-step how to plan, design and maintain a rain garden. Plus, Carlton and South St. Louis SWCD staff will be available to schedule a free site visit with you. Even better, they have funds to help cover up to $500 of your project.

The goal is to help Carlton and St. Louis County residents protect and restore our great state's natural resources. Do your part and keep our lakes and streams healthy. Even the smallest project helps our water quality, bees, birds and butterflies.

To register, visit carltonswcd.org/events. You can also contact Carlton SWCD conservation specialist Alyssa Bloss at 218-384-3891 or [email protected] to register, schedule a site visit, or relay any questions.

Oh, and check out the launch of our famous Native Plant Kit and Seed Mix sale at carltonswcd.org.

To find out more, contact Alyssa Bloss, Carlton SWCD conservation specialist at 218-384-3891 or [email protected].

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