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Orchard Park Presbyterian Church is excited to have a great new feature to our grounds. We have added a rain and pollinator garden to the northeast side of our grounds.

The garden will take a couple years to establish itself, so please be patient as we let nature do the work. We are happy to be working with the Department of Natural Resources and Hamilton County Soil and Water Conservation District through a cost share/reimbursable agreement. Williams Creek Management will install the Rain and Pollinator Garden.

The rain garden will capture rain in the depression on the northeast side of our grounds and allow the ponded water to infiltrate into the soil rather than run into streets and storm drains. Dirty runoff that enters storm drains is sent directly to “receiving waters” which are our rivers, streams, lakes, ponds or wetlands.

The pollinator garden will be located nearby and attract pollinators such as bees, butterflies, bats, moths, and hummingbirds using specific plants that do not reside in a rain garden.

The benefits of these two gardens include:

  • Re-energizing the aquifer, an underground layer of water-bearing permeable rock, from which groundwater can be extracted using a water well, by allowing ponding water absorbed into the soil;
  • Helping to control harmful runoff (gas, oil, antifreeze, salt, etc.) from impervious urban areas (roads, sidewalks, etc.) to be absorbed into the ground and plants instead of going into our watershed which kills vital living creatures and contaminates our drinking water;
  • Creating a sustainable habitat for God’s creatures while giving those that come to the church a peaceful feeling through nature’s sights and sounds;
  • Increasing pollinator activity;
  • Native plantings will invite pollinators that require less maintenance after establishment; and
  • Decreasing OPPC’s carbon footprint by mowing less, decrease in fuel costs, depreciation of equipment, etc.

For anyone interested in learning more about how to install a rain garden on their own property, The Hamilton County Soil and Water Conservation District offers free site visits, technical assistance, and cost share to individual property owners in the county. You can contact them at 317-773-2181.

By creating a sustainable habitat for God’s creatures, we practice good land stewardship as well as increase pollinator activity which will benefit local gardens.

For more information contact Scott Crist at 317-258-7488 or scott2916@gmail.com.