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Bioswale Garden

A ditch that cleanses water

As part of the project to build the Nevin Welcome Center, a new parking lot and the adjacent bioswale were completed in 2010. The bioswale is designed to slow and clean storm water runoff from the parking lot while providing an attractive garden landscape which is more ecologically-minded than a traditional storm drain system.

Plants of the Bioswale

Plants in the bioswale are hardy, strong-rooted perennial and grasses able to tolerate both wet and dry conditions. Most of them are native to this region. It is densely planted with seven cultivars of native switchgrass (Panicum virgatum). For additional variety and color, flowering perennials, including sneezeweed (Helenium sp.), Joe Pye weed (Eupatorium sp.), and milkweed (Asclepias sp.) were planted. To add height and structure, shrubs and small trees were added, such as winterberry (Ilex verticillata), and American hornbeam (Carpinus caroliniana).

Click here to view a plant list for this garden (7 page pdf file).

Click here to view the interpretive panel installed next to the bioswale, which followes the route of surface water runoff from the parking lot through the bioswale.



Click below to hear a two-minute audio narrative about the Bioswale Garden.

Botanic Gardens
Best Season: 

late July through August