There are some fantastic free and steeply discounted residential stormwater management features that you can sign up for right now! These programs won’t last forever, so don’t miss your opportunity to get green tools that improve your property and our city’s water quality.
1. Rain Barrels (FREE)
Rain Barrels are storage containers that collect rainwater from downspouts. Water can be used for gardening, washing down patio furniture, lawn watering, and other activities that would otherwise use tap water. This allows you to use rainwater instead of paying for tap water! Additionally, by storing rainwater, you can decrease the impact of stormwater runoff to streams, which helps protect our environment and minimize sewer back-ups.
The Energy Coordinating Agency and the Philadelphia Water Department are providing free rain barrels to Philadelphia residents. If you’re interested, sign up to receive a rain barrel here: http://www.phillywatersheds.org/rain-barrel-notification-list
2. Downspout Planters (FREE to residents that meet income eligibility requirements)
A downspout planter is a decorative garden planter filled with gravel, soil, and vegetation that uses rainfall from the roof as irrigation. Downspout planters are connected to the downspout and are designed to slow water as it enters the sewer system. Contact Mike Verla with Rebuilding Together Philadelphia at or 215-965-0777 to see if you are eligible to receive a FREE downspout planter. Tell him TTF sent you!
photo by Green Treks
3. Street and Yard Trees
Trees bring benefits to the community including shade, increased property, values and peace of mind. They can protect our city and its inhabitants by cleaning the air and water, reducing flooding and energy usage, and moderating city temperatures. If you are interested in receiving a street or yard tree, you can sign up with Philadelphia Parks & Recreations or if there is a Tree Tenders group in your area, then contact your local Tree Tenders group to work with them.
4. Rain Check (Stormwater Management Tools subsidized by PWD)
Rain Check is a pilot program through which the Philadelphia Water Department helps residents meet the cost of specific residential landscaping improvements that help manage rainwater and beautify homes. Participation in the program will not result in a lower water bill. If you live in Germantown or Frankford and are interested in this project, please contact us.