04/15/2014 08:52 AM
BATON ROUGE – In her guidebook “Using Plants for Stormwater Management,” landscape
architect Dana Nunez Brown details ways to manage each drop of rainwater where it
falls, using a cost-effective and environmentally sensitive approach. The subtropical
climate of the Gulf South supports a varied abundance of flora, and this diversity
is sustained by the ample amount of rainwater that characterizes the region. Managing
rainwater in a planned environment and mitigating its effect on human habitation can
test the skills of even the most seasoned landscape architect or designer.
Under natural conditions, rainfall primarily percolates into the ground and flows
as groundwater until it is absorbed by trees and other vegetation, after which it
is evaporated into the atmosphere. Brown identifies plants and techniques that leverage
this natural process in order to filter, clean, and slow runoff, a practice known
as Low Impact Development.
“Using Plants for Stormwater Management” presents the native ecological communities
and plant species of the Gulf South in easy-to-follow sections and diagrams. Information
ranging from the productiveness of root structures and the compatibility of plants
with local soils to the optimal elevation of specific vegetation and the average dimensions
of foliage is represented by graphic icons for quick and easy identification. An accessible
and essential resource, this book gives both novices and experts the know-how to harness
rainfall and create beautiful, ecologically functioning landscapes.
Brown, a licensed landscape architect in Louisiana and Mississippi, is an accredited
professional and certified planner. She is recognized in the Gulf South as an expert
in water management, green infrastructure, and Low Impact Development.
Posted on Tuesday, April 15, 2014