Manage Stormwater in your Backyard

In Burien, we know to be ready for rain. More and more residents are making sure their gardens are too. While rain can be life-giving, too much of it can cause pools of water to form in our yards or even lead to flooding and erosion. Excess rain flows off our property and into storm drains, picking up pollutants from the road along the way. This polluted stormwater enters Miller, Walker, and Salmon Creeks directly, without being cleaned, and is dangerous to wildlife there. Learn how to prepare for heavy rains and make your garden environmentally friendly!

Rainwater harvesting

Collect water in barrels or cisterns to use in the garden during the summer months. Read how to make a rain barrel and watch the video below for more information on installing your very own cistern!

Install a rain garden

Made up of absorbent soil and rain-loving plants, rain gardens act like a sponge for runoff. During rainstorms, stormwater is captured in the rain garden and slowly filters into the ground. This process both cleans and releases the water back into our creeks as it would in a natural (non-paved) environment. We highly recommend this easy-to-use guide to build your own rain garden. You can also contact Mary Eidmann, Burien's Stormwater Education Specialist, if you are interested in installing a rain garden on your property or would like more information: marye@burienwa.gov

Diagram of rain garden including gutter downspout, plants.

Permeable pavers

Where you can, break up paved surfaces (like driveways, patios) with permeable pavers. While there are a few options, all of them help rainwater soak into the ground instead of pooling up or running off and still provide a solid ground surface.

Permeable pavers.