How we care for the land impacts water quality in our local lakes and rivers. The River Restoration program teaches residents of the watershed how to manage their land to improve water quality and to provide wildlife habitat through hands-on projects and educational events.
Riparian (waterfront) landowners must recognize their property is part of a larger system and log jams, bank erosion, and flooding are natural processes. Establishing a buffer zone of native plants, managing (rather than removing) woody debris and using soft bioengineering techniques to stabilize banks will all help to reduce erosion and improve water quality for us and the fish and wildlife that depend on the river.
Our actions impact water quality whether we live along the river or not. The Rouge River is an urban river. Much of the land is covered by buildings, roads, parking lots and houses. These impervious surfaces prevent rainwater and snow melt from soaking into the ground. To prevent flooding on our roads and in our neighborhoods rainwater is collected in catch basins on streets and parking lots and is piped to nearby streams, carrying with it pollutants picked up along the way. The result is a flashy river system where water levels rise rapidly during and after wet weather which scours stream banks and increases sediment in the stream.
What can you do to help improve water quality?
Landscaping practices, proper waste disposal, and home, yard and car care have an impact on water quality in lakes and rivers. Here's how you can help protect the Rouge River and Western Lake Erie.
- Properly care for your home, yard and vehicle (more information coming soon)
- Conserve water (more information coming soon)
- Properly dispose of household hazardous waste (more information coming soon)
- Pick up pet waste before it rains (more information coming soon)
Buckthorn Busting Workday
Saturday, Nov. 23, 2013, 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM
Lola Valley Park, Redford, Meet at the comfort station at Kinloch and Pamona
Spend a few hours improving the park by helping to combat the spread of this highly invasive shrub. Gloves, tools and water provided. No prior experience or plant identification necessary. Experienced leaders will direct work. Dress for the weather and wear sturdy shoes.
Register here. Questions? Please call 313.792.9621.
The River Restoration Program is funded by:
- Intorduction to Green Landscaping for Clean Streams
- Creating Native Wildflower Gardens
- Rain Garden Guide
- Greenacres: Landscaping with Ntive Platns, EPA
Native Plant Identification
- Seedling Identification Guide of Native Prairie Plants
- Newcomb's Wildflower Guide
- Michigan's Flora I, II and III by Edward G. Voss
Sources of Native Plants
Invasive Plant Information
Riparian (water front) Living