What Is Rainscaping?

Rainscaping is any combination of plantings, water features, catch basins, permeable pavement and other activities that manage stormwater as close as possible to where it falls, rather than moving it someplace else. In addition to rain gardens and bioswales, a diverse landscape that includes trees, shrubs, perennials, mulch and amended soils intercepts and disperses rain as it falls, and allows more water absorption into the soil and by plants. Click on each landscape option below to explore the range of rainscaping possibilities:

RainScaping graphic lawn alternatives green roof soil amendments yard management woodland restoration creek corridor vegetative buffer rain garden bioswale rock weirs and sock dams rainwater harvesting permeable pavers

Why Rainscape?

Impervious surfaces such as rooftops and driveways have replaced healthy soils and natural plant communities that once readily absorbed rainwater. The resulting runoff contributes to water pollution, health challenges and property damage. You can landscape your yard for both beauty and function. Address specific water issues on your own property such as erosion, wet areas of the yard and difficult-to-mow places, while positively impacting your neighbors and area streams as well. Use our Benefits and Goals Checklist to clarify which rainscaping benefits are most important to you.

How to Rainscape

For guidance on which rainscaping features will work best in your yard and how to install them, follow our Rainscaping Flowchart below. Click on a step to go to that section:

RainScaping Flowchart Link to Select Other RainScaping Options section Link to Is a Rain Garden Right for Your Site? section Link to Design & Build a Rain Garden section Link to What Do You Know About Your Site? section