Key Club recognized by the Schuylkill Action Network
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Just in time for Earth Day, a rain garden was constructed and planted right across the street from our very own high school. Members of Key Club had the opportunity to work with Krista Scheirer, a representative from the Montgomery County Conservation District, to help design and plant this special garden. As recognition for their voluntary role with the project, PVHS’s Key Club was awarded the 2016 Schuylkill Drinking Water Award for their work with protecting the environment.
Key Clubbers picked a broad range of shrubs and flowers that were diverse in color, bloom time, and are native to the area so that local wildlife and pollinators are supported. Fruit-bearing plants, such as blueberries, can also be found in specific areas of the garden for visitors to consume.
However, the principal characteristic that was considered was the amount of water the plants need to survive. Plants with high water tolerance were necessary for this project because they are to be placed in the basin-shaped garden to absorb the excess flow of rain.
Rain gardens play a crucial role in keeping local waterways safe by filtering the runoff water; otherwise, the polluted water will flow into the other bodies of water, such as the Perkiomen Creek, and destroy the thriving ecosystem there. This particular rain garden helps to maintain the ecosystems and water quality of the Schuylkill River since the Perkiomen Creek eventually converges into it.
The garden was also constructed by the Township Roads Crew and the Conservation District. The garden was awarded a grant provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act that was administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and through the PECO Green Region Open Space Program. Funding came from the Exelon Corp through the Schuylkill River Fund and the Delaware River Basin Commision.
You too can build a rain garden in your own backyard! For more information please visit www.MontgomeryConservation.org.