Neighbors Capture Rainwater

Your neighbors are installing rain barrels, planting rain gardens, using native plants and redirecting downspouts away from pavement to help Millers Creek. What are you doing? Send an e-mail to so we can recognize your efforts on our map.

Community Wide Projects

Prairie Community Rain Garden

This is a community rain garden project on the east side of Prairie at Briarcliff. HRWC partnered with the City of Ann Arbor and JFNew to remove the 150-foot length of pavement that currently exists at the site and replace it with a 5,000 square foot rain garden. We facilitated planning and provided designs, plant materials and educational signs. In June of 2009 more than 20 of you dedicated a Saturday to plant the garden with 2,000 native plants, shrubs and trees. This garden now catches rainwater runoff from a 41,000 square foot area along Prairie Street -- water that would otherwise flood into Millers Creek through the storm drains.

Thurston School Rain Garden

Thurston School students from the third grade and school neighbors helped Millers Creek by capturing rainwater in a school rain garden. HRWC and JFNew provided planning and design work, site prep, plant materials and educational signs and in June of 2009 we converted a grassy depression that was receiving rainwater runoff from the school's roof into a 1,400 square foot rain garden. The site's heavy clays were replaced with a rich porous soil and then planted with water-loving native plants. As a result, the rain that runs off the school roof now flows through the garden, infiltrates through the soil and is taken up by the plants.

Plymouth Orchard Building Pond

HRWC and JFNew worked with the Plymouth Orchard Building to restore the pond and surrounding landscape so that it functions to hold rainwater and reduce flooding in Millers Creek. We modified the concrete outlet structure so that the pond would work better to hold and clean the stormwater it catches from the Georgetown neighborhood and release it more slowly into Millers Creek. We also planted the pond's banks with water-loving deep-rooted native plants that will take up even more rainwater runoff.

Private Rain Gardens

Four neighborhood homeowners and the congregation at Divine Shepherd Lutheran Church worked to keep rainwater runoff out of Millers Creek by planting rain gardens in their yards and on the church grounds in the spring of 2009. HRWC in cooperation with the Washtenaw County Water Resources Commissioner´s office facilitated planning and provided designs, plant materials and educational signage for each rain garden. Homeowners and congregation members provided the site prep and planting labor!

Residential Rain Barrels

In the summer of 2008, 56 homeowners in the Millers Creek Rainwater Project Area helped the creek by committing to use rain barrels to capture and store rainwater for re-use. HRWC with the help of Carpenter Bros Hardware distributed a total of 76 barrels in the Project Area.

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