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Volunteers of Lower Susquehanna Called On for a Unique Partnership

Posted: August 31, 2015

Greening the Lower Susquehanna conservation corps volunteers had the opportunity to help maintain a rain garden on the 193d Special Operations Wing of the U.S. Air Force in Middletown, PA.
Conservation Crop Volunteers on the 193 Operations Wing of the US Air Force in Middletown, PA.

Conservation Crop Volunteers on the 193 Operations Wing of the US Air Force in Middletown, PA.

Sarah Moor, the Environmental Manager at the 193d Special Operations Wing of the US Air Force in Middletown, PA, called on the AEC's Greening the Lower Susquehanna program for help in restoring a rain garden on the base that needed some TLC. Weeds had outcompeted the native grasses and dogwood trees that were originally planted there. Greening the Lower Susquehanna staff Jennifer Fetter and Kristen Kyler called on the program’s volunteer conservation corps for help.

On August 12, eleven volunteers participated in removing invasive weeds from the rain garden and spread mulch to help prevent their return. These efforts will allow the native plants in the rain garden to better establish themselves. As a result, the rain garden will better be able to do its job of collecting and infiltrating stormwater. Routine rain garden maintenance also helps to maintain the aesthetic appearance of the garden, which is important for preventing them from becoming blemishes in the eyes of passersby, resulting in their removal.

This rain garden is especially important because of the high amount of impervious area on the Air Force base. Best management practices like the rain garden help reduce flooding and infiltrate stormwater when there is little pervious area to do so.

The Greening the Lower Susquehanna Volunteer Conservation Corps has over 350 active participants who respond to requests for help throughout the Lower Susquehanna region. The AEC partners with the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Lancaster, Lebanon and Dauphin County Conservation Districts, and local conservation groups on this project, which is made possible by a grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation. To join the mailing list for future events, email .