MERIDIAN TOWNSHIP - On April 30th, the Ingham County Drain Commissioner's Office conducted a controlled burn of the rain gardens in the Towar Gardens Neighborhood.
This neighborhood is susceptible to extreme flooding and rain gardens help to alleviate that. Rain gardens consist of native vegetation that are planted in a small depression to drain excess water. In order to keep the gardens functioning, they need to be burned every three years. This targets early invasive and non-native vegetation, which is important because the native plants filter and cleanse runoff before it enters the water.
Ingham County Drain Commissioner Patrick Lindemann was present for the controlled burning. "It's a relatively inexpensive way to maintain the system, so we will be doing this for the next one hundred years."
There are over 150 rain gardens in the neighborhood and building them saved 11.5 million dollars in infrastructure costs.
This controlled burning will actually help the native flowers and grasses to thrive this summer. The plants not only manage the volume of water, but also take pollution out of the water. The whole process took only a few hours and the Meridian Township Fire Department was in attendance the entire time to monitor the fire.