I was pleased to read flood recovery articles in The Gazette and Cedar Rapids’ encouragement of rain gardens, bioswales and permeable paving that were articulated in Our CR Magazine.
Although progress has been made, we’re far from out of future flood danger. Positive action by every landowner to retain stormwater on his or her property is the most effective way to reduce future flood crests by allowing rain to percolate into the soil near where it falls. Techniques include:
• Directing downspout water into rain gardens, rain barrels or lawns rather than pavement.
• Replacing conventional pavement with permeable equivalent.
• Replacing lawns with pollinator patches-prairie.
• Adjusting mowers to cut grass tall. Tall grass encourages deeper root growth, helping soften the soil.
In rural areas, establishing and protecting native vegetation buffers along streams and rivers and protecting woodlots and grasslands helps keep rain out of rivers.
If we work together and manage our properties to retain water, we collectively can reduce flood threats.