- Associated Press - Thursday, September 25, 2014

GRAND ISLAND, Neb. (AP) - About 60 people have volunteered to help plant Grand Island’s first public bioinfiltration garden on Saturday at the city library.

The garden will serve as a place for water to pool after heavy rains and catch runoff pollutants from the library’s parking lot, The Grand Island Independent reported (https://bit.ly/1rooHoh ). It will use the garden’s plants to cleanse the pollutants from the water before it enters the city’s storm water system.

Plants that will be included in the bioinfiltration garden include the blue flag iris, barren strawberry, hot lips turtlehead and Cheyenne sky switchgrass.

“These plants basically filter out most of the toxins from any vehicles, fertilizers or bad substances before they enter the groundwater,” said Jeremy Vlcek, owner of Vleck Gardens. “The roots act as a filter.”

Library director Steve Fosselman said more people are welcome to join at the planting by just showing up this weekend. He encouraged volunteers to wear long pants and bring small garden hand tools.

The garden will also feature grasses and plants that will help butterfly and bee populations.

“There are several varieties - black-eyed Susan, false blue indigo and several others - that will really attract butterflies and beneficial bees,” Fosselman said.

Grand Island received a Greener Nebraska Towns grant for nearly $43,000 to cover most of the garden’s cost.


Information from: The Grand Island Independent, https://www.theindependent.com

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