DIY – Development and the Wetlands

Topic Key


History & Science

Stakeholder Perspectives

Sustainable Design



Source: USGS

"A mini-wetland in your yard can provide many of the same benefits that natural wetlands offer. A mini-wetland can replace the important natural functions of wetlands that may have been lost when your community was developed.

A wetland in your backyard will temporarily store, filter, and clean runoff water from your roof and lawn. It will provide habitat for many interesting creatures--from butterflies and bees to salamanders, toads, frogs, and birds.

If you have a naturally occurring wet spot in your yard, or a low swale or drainageway with heavy clay soils, you easily can turn it into a wetland paradise. Even if you do not have a naturally wet spot, you can establish an area in your yard to grow many of the beautiful plants associated with wetlands."

Source: Fern Creek Design

Source: Habitat Network

"The hurricanes and tropical storms events of 2017 were historic. Images from impacted communities can invoke strong feelings. As we look around our homes and communities–both those impacted and those that were unscathed–we may ask ourselves, what can I do?

It is likely that some storms will continue to bring heavy winds and precipitation that may threaten infrastructure no matter what we do. Absorbing all the rain water from a mega storm like Harvey may not be possible, but in urban areas landscaping features like rain gardens can absorb rain from smaller events and decrease the frequency of floods in high risk neighborhoods."

Local Resources:

Native Plants

Community Organizations

How to Create an Effective Rain Garden (Source: Habitat Network)

DIY Tips from the experts

Family Handyman
Scientific American