The Key to Success is Knowing Your Flowers

Youth Rain Action Storyboard

Post 9: The Key to Success is Knowing Your Flowers

By: Eninna Luli

In today’s workshop, Mike from Fern Ridge Landscaping was able to join us in teaching how to design a rain garden, mainly focusing on plant selection.

Research is key in deciding which plants to use for your rain garden. Mike advises to read the tags when shopping for plants at nurseries as they provide valuable information, such as average height in full bloom, and their respective Latin name. For example, coneflower is suitable for a rain garden because it can handle extreme hot and cold weather as well as wet and dry. In addition, coneflower comes in various types of colours which can provide an aesthetic component in a garden.

He advises using native plants, instead of invasive ones, due to ecological purposes and because they provide a balance with native species that are able to feed on the plants. It is advisable to avoid monoculture by buying various types of plants because if one plant is attacked by a species, the other plants will not be affected, and the garden will still survive. Avoid monoculture by also using a mixture of plants that are aesthetically pleasing in various seasons. In addition, it is cost- and time-efficient to use plants that are suitable with the available soil instead of purchasing other types of soil in order to thrive with other plants.


Visit the Youth Rain Action project page to learn more or contact Emily Dutton at

The Youth Rain Action Project is led by Ecosource in partnership with Toronto and Region Conservation Authority, the Burnhamthorpe Sustainable Neighbourhood Retrofit Action Plan (SNAP), and Sheridan Nurseries, and is generously supported by the Government of Ontario’s Great Lakes Guardian Community Fund.