Stormwater ponding is a common problem in coastal areas, and it can exacerbate flooding and water quality issues. One way to mitigate stormwater ponding is to plant native plants that are well-adapted to the local climate and soil conditions. Some native North Carolina coastal plant species that are effective at absorbing stormwater include:
- Sweetbay magnolia (Magnolia virginiana)
- Swamp red maple (Acer rubrum var. trilobum)
- Southern red cedar (Juniperus virginiana)
- Yaupon holly (Ilex vomitoria)
These plants have deep root systems that help to anchor them in the soil and absorb stormwater. They also have the ability to filter pollutants out of the water, which can improve water quality.
In addition to planting native plants, there are other things that can be done to reduce stormwater ponding, such as:
- Creating rain gardens or bio retention basins or swales: Rain gardens and bioswales are shallow depressions that are planted with native vegetation. They are designed to collect and filter stormwater runoff before it enters storm drains or waterways.
- Installing permeable pavement: Permeable pavement, such as porous asphalt or concrete pavers, allows stormwater to soak into the ground instead of running off into storm drains.
- Disconnecting downspouts from storm drains: Disconnecting downspouts from storm drains and redirecting them to rain gardens, bio retention swales, or other infiltration areas can help to reduce stormwater runoff.
- Collecting rainwater in cisterns or barrels: Rainwater can be collected in cisterns or barrels and used for irrigation or other non-potable purposes. This can help to reduce the demand on municipal water supplies and reduce stormwater runoff.
By taking these steps, we can help to reduce stormwater ponding and protect our coastal communities from flooding and water quality issues.