Mississippi Water Management Organization (MWMO) recently awarded Seward Montessori an Action Grant of $10,080 to install a channel drain and raingarden. In addition MWMO will provide 20 copies of the Blue Thumb Guide valued at $720.00. The garden will be located near the main entrance on 28th Ave. A channel drain will direct rain water from the sidewalk to the garden.
Last fall parent volunteers Emily Green and Ann Dohrmann met with landscape architect Michael Keenan from Metro Blooms. Michael designed a raingarden with Minnesota native plants. He will oversee the raingarden’s installation on June 1st. Science teachers Karen Utter and John Roper-Batker, along with teachers Brad and Cathy Heyne, who lead the Nature Club, contributed to the grant.
Students will have the opportunity to assist in the installation of the garden. During the school year Brad and Cathy Heyne will oversee the maintenance of the garden and be assisted by students. In the summer Metro Bloom, in collaboration with the Minnesota Conservation Corp volunteers, will care for the garden.
We anticipate direct water quality improvements through this project. The rain garden will also provide a strong environmental educational resource for our school. A rain garden open house will occur in conjunction with 2012 ice cream social next August. The grant also includes money for the development of a website and a sign describing the project. We will also host a Somali educational event and lead a Project Wet and Project Learning Tree workshop for teachers and community members.