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Rain gardens in Hudson -- it all started when Hudson entered and won a prize in the America in Bloom contest in 2005.
As a result, Hudson was asked to participate in the Communities in Bloom International Challenge in 2006 and a committee of Hudson volunteers, including Pat Rydquist, Sherry Beam and Jim Hackney met at Park Director Eric Hutchinson's office to plan.
It was decided that we needed several things to make Hudson a "destination spot" and more appealing to the judges. Among the items on the list were rain gardens, particularly in the downtown area.
The first rain garden was put in at Hudson Springs Park in 2006. It was dedicated in memory of renowned Hudson gardener Janet Cheeseman. It was created in an area where there was standing water during many months of the year. Instead of adding drainage and piping the water to a downstream location where it could potentially impact another location, the rain garden allows the surface water to slowly percolate into the ground while being filtered. The end result has been a different type of garden with different plantings than the other gardens within the park system.
The second was created on Clinton Street, just west of the condominiums, on the west side of Brandywine Creek. This is the largest of the four rain gardens (2000 sq. ft.), and serves several purposes. The half of the garden nearest Clinton Street, including the hill of grasses, acts as a true rain garden. The runoff from Clinton Street is percolated through the garden, filtering off harmful chemicals and surface street oils before the water continues into the creek below. The part of the garden towards Owen Brown Street is more of a dry rain garden. It was planted to be hospitable to birds, bees and butterflies.
The library had a rain garden area planted in May of 2008 in the bio-retention area along the back of the property and the City Environmental Awareness group planted a rain garden on the path behind Barlow Community Center. Any continually marshy spot can be transformed into a rain garden. Many websites are dedicated to this; one of them is