City of Burien now accepting applications for low-income Rain Garden program

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The City of Burien is now accepting applications for its grant-funded rain garden program, which will install ten rain gardens in low-income neighborhoods across Burien.

Participants in the program will have help installing a rain garden on their property. All Burien residents will also have the opportunity to participate in a workshop where they will learn about the benefits of a rain garden and how to build and maintain it. Materials and workshop instruction will be available in both English and Spanish.

“The program was developed this way in order to make it accessible to more people in our community,” says Mary Eidmann, City of Burien Stormwater Outreach Specialist. “It is vital to remove barriers that may prevent low-income or Spanish-speaking residents from installing rain gardens on their property.”

Applications should be submitted by the priority deadline of May 1, 2017. However, applications will be accepted until all ten rain gardens have been installed. For applications, a map of low-income neighborhoods in Burien, and more information about the program, visit

What are the benefits of a rain garden?
After rain runs off your roof, it most likely ends up in the street where it picks up pollutants like fertilizer, dog waste, motor oil, and other chemicals before it enters a storm drain. From there, this polluted water flows untreated to our creeks, lakes, and Puget Sound. We call this stormwater pollution, and it’s destroying our aquatic environments.

One way to prevent stormwater pollution is to install a rain garden. A rain garden is a shallow depression designed with plants that can keep their roots wet all winter while also withstanding the drought of summer. The downspout(s) of a home are redirected into the rain garden which collects the rain water as it slowly infiltrates into the soil instead of running off the property and becoming stormwater.

Rain gardens not only provide environmental benefits. Here in Burien, there is a wide selection of plants that are able to go in rain gardens, creating colorful environments, lush foliage, or bird and butterfly habitat. Property values can increase as a result.

About the Project
Support for this project is provided in part by the Puget Sound Stewardship and Mitigation Fund, a grantmaking fund created by the Puget Soundkeeper Alliance and administered by the Rose Foundation for Communities and the Environment.
Program Contact:

Mary Eidmann
Stormwater Outreach Specialist
City of Burien

[email protected]

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12 Responses to “City of Burien now accepting applications for low-income Rain Garden program”
  1. Burien Resident says:

    Rain gardens are filthy stagnant water that attract Mosquitoes and rats.

    We have storm drains and a sewage system for a very good reason

    • Captain obvious says:

      In case of mosquito’s installing a small to medium water pump to create movement in the water can help slow down the bugs. For rats install small wire fencing also there cheap lights you can install that scare rats and pests away.

    • Lee Moyer says:

      Burien Resident

      You seem clueless about rain gardens. I’ve been involved in a number of rain gardens and never seen one with mosquitoes or rats. Most of the time they do not have standing water.

      The reason we have the type of storm drains we have is that many years ago the usual stormwater solution was to drain it downhill as simply as possible. We are now battling the erosion and pollution that simplistic technique causes. The untreated and unfiltered storm drains lead directly to our streams and ultimately Puget Sound. Untreated storm water is the largest cause of the degradation of Puget Sound and the streams leading to Puget Sound..

      The sanitary sewage system is independent and has nothing to do with stormwater.

  2. Carrie Johnston says:

    All the cooperative extension websites say rain gardens ARE a mosquito habitat!

    So just who is clueless here?

  3. Clean it up! says:

    Why not add frogs?

    • Captain obvious says:

      The can get loud at night and early morning hours. They may sound nice but after awhile they can become bother some and attract raccoons and other pests or small animals.

      • Captain obvious says:

        Oops I forget to mention gold fish can help with getting rid of mosquito’s but they can also get noticed by raccoons and become a feeding frenzy. If you have cats or a small dog or a large dog you don’t really want raccoons in your yard.

        • Clean it up! says:

          Capt. O, With rain gardens there is no pool or pond for fish to live in. Frogs are in fact a sign of a healthy environment. There are several types here in the Pacific Northwest. Many are small and live in woodlands where they are only heard sporadically. They often live for years on relatively small patches of land. You may be thinking of marsh frogs or Pacific chorus frogs which is only one type and not a good candidate for a rain gardens which, if made correctly does not have standing water for more than 24 hours.

          • capt obvious says:

            Yes I am aware of different types of frogs in the area I have had a few as pets over the years. But any little animal or reptile or what ever can and most likely will attract predator animals likes rats, raccoons,opossums. Which can unfortunately in the hunt for food can damage your water garden or pond.

            I have ran this issue my self with setting up a pond in my backyard. After setting up so many nets and little fences to sitting up late at night with a high powered air gun. I can tell you it can be time consuming and expensive getting rid of pests.

            There are tons of ways to keep them away and tons of ways to attract them.

  4. Jennifer Schultz says:

    I’d never have a slimy “rain garden” on my property!
    I don’t want the bugs and pests.

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