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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Sunday - September 13, 2009

From: Indianapolis, IN
Region: Midwest
Topic: Rain Gardens
Title: Bioswale for Indianapolis
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

The city of Indianapolis has a very historic Central Canal, which was built in the 1830s. Due to erosion, the parent company of Indianapolis Water, Veolia, has proposed covering the banks with a type of woven mat and crushed rock (riprap). This "solution" will significantly alter the appearance and ecosystem of the canal. Do you have any suggestions as to plants which would be best planted along the banks of the canal (both in and out of the water), to help slow the erosion and lessen the silt issues the city deals with? Thank you.

ANSWER:

Basically, you are creating a bioswale along the banks of the canal, and fortunately, there is already a previous answer from Mr. Smarty Plants on such a project in Indianapolis. And because Mr. Smarty Plants was not altogether familiar with "rip rap," we included some information from Storm Water Authority.org Riprap.

It's not very often that we have an answer for a question in the same locality ready and waiting, but we hope this gives you the information you need. 

 

 

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