You can help improve the quality of our lakes, rivers and streams by planting a rain garden in your own back yard. Metro Blooms is offering a series of low-cost rain garden workshops to get you started.
For just $10, you can learn how to plan, design, install and maintain a rain garden filled with native plants, which filter pollutants out of runoff. There are three levels of workshops, which start this week and run through the end of May: an introductory session; a design session in a small-group format, and a three-hour session that combines both introduction and design.
Classes will be held throughout the Twin Cities area, from Minneapolis to Savage to Wayzata. For locations and times, call 651-699-2426 or go to www.metroblooms.org.Sustainable makeover
Maplewood wants you to give your yard an Extreme Green makeover. And it'll lend a hand, even if you don't live in Maplewood.
Starting this month, the city will sponsor classes on rain gardens, rain barrels, low-input lawn care and designing for sustainable yards. There also will be a family-friendly celebration of trees, a wildflower hike and a water fest at Lake Phalen. (Nominal fee for some events; others are free.)
Nonresidents are welcome to participate, but you must be a Maplewood resident to qualify for the grand prize: a $15,000 front-yard makeover.
Find out more about the initiative at a kickoff event from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. March 18 at the Maplewood Library. (All attendees will eligible to win door prizes, which include compost bins, rain barrels, garden tools and gift certificates.)