Wednesday, November 14, 2012

A Curious Rain Garden

Last year students at the Shadow Lake Elementary started to dig a rain garden at the front of the school. They added special plants to help the rain garden filter the water. Then they attached the drain pipe that came off the roof with Mr.  Donaldson’s help and buried it in the soil. When the rain started coming down the water wouldn’t drain {see picture on right}. We waited over the summer to see what happened.

When we returned the next year, the rain garden was dry. About five weeks into school, a Caterpillar came to dig the rain garden deeper because the students couldn’t. Since the rain wouldn’t drain, we suspected that there was a clay vein or a high water table in the ground.

To test those theories, Mrs. White’s class collected some data on October 16th, 2012. First Mrs. White put a yard stick in the deepest part of the rain garden and used rocks to make it stand up. Second, Mrs. White put a hose next to the yard stick and then turned the water on. Our class went out every fifteen minutes to see if the water was draining, we also took 5-7 pictures. Each time we checked on the rain garden the water height was 0 to 1 inches high so the rain garden is draining.
After a rainy week we went outside to see if the rain garden was still draining and it was. There wasn’t a clay vein based on our experiment but there might be a high water table.

Shadow Lake will continue monitoring the rain garden while it is raining to see if it drains. Clearly this rain garden is a curious one!

Thanks to Mrs. White's Class and Green Team for this Post!

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