Rain gardens are a beautiful way of making our watershed a happier and healthier place. This year, Friends of Lake Wingra received a grant from the Natural Resources Foundation to spread the appreciation for all our dedicated rain garden care takers. Some of you may have noticed the bright orange butterfly rain garden signs popping up in rain gardens near you (or in your own!). These signs were our way of thanking our neighbors for providing clean water to Lake Wingra. They also let everyone in the area know that the garden is intentional and it resides in the Lake Wingra watershed.
As many of you know, a watershed is a complicated concept to those not actively involved in environmental issues. It can be difficult to visualize how rain falling in your driveway can deliver pollutants to a lake miles away. That’s why we at Friends of Lake Wingra prefer the word community to watershed. The watershed is really a group of plants, animals and people that share an intricately related space. What happens in one part of the community has impacts throughout – even if they’re not immediately visible.
Which brings us back to the rain garden signs. We felt it was so important to thank all of you for participating in our watershed community. While walking around to hand out the signs, we were inspired by the enthusiasm of everyone we spoke with. Neighbors were happy to invite us into their homes and share stories of their own environmental efforts. It was good to hear directly from so many of you about the local environmental issues that concern you the most. We hope that in the future you’ll continue to share your thoughts with us and help us make our community a better, healthier place.