The city of Cedar Rapids and AmeriCorps are teaming to provide free design and installation of a rain garden in 2018. (photo/Cindy Hadish)

Cedar Rapids residents can apply for free design and installation of a rain garden, a  landscaping feature that captures rain water runoff on your property and can help improve water quality downstream.

Rain gardens not only provide a functional value, but can add beauty to your yard, as well.

AmeriCorps is partnering with the city of Cedar Rapids for the Free Rain Garden Design/Installation Giveaway in 2018.

Applications are due March 27, 2018, and can be requested from Stormwater Coordinator Cara Matteson, at

Design and installation of rain gardens will be completed by AmeriCorps at no cost to the resident. Applicants will be contacted by May if they have been selected to win a rain garden design/installation, with installation planned for May-August 2018.

Rain garden material costs (plants, edgers) will be at the expense of the resident, but these expenses are eligible for the City’s Stormwater Cost-Share Program.

Information on the cost-share program can be found on the City’s website.

Linn County Master Gardeners and other experts offer advice on a multitude of gardening topics during the Winter Gardening Fair, coming up on March 3, 2018. Find information on the fair here.