Grier students are helping to keep local waters clean by building and maintaining a local rain garden. Last year, the Blair Conservation District reached out to Grier to ask for volunteers to help with a rain garden project in Tyrone.
Grier students began working on the rain garden in the fall of 2016, establishing a low-lying garden between a parking lot and the Little Juniata River. The students return to tend the garden every fall and spring. Learning Skills teacher, Mrs. Shelly Davis, who leads the team of Grier volunteers, cares for the garden during the summer.
Without a rain garden, water from rain would rush across the parking lot and run directly into the river, bringing along all sorts of trash and automotive pollutants with it. The deep-rooted plants in the garden slow the flow of water into the river and filter pollutants. Additionally, the native plants encourage pollinators, like bees and butterflies, which are an essential part of the ecosystem and often in peril in areas where humans have eliminated these types of plants.
During this recent spring visit, which coincided with Earth Day, the students cleaned up the garden by picking up litter, planted, watered the new plants with river water, and mulched the gardens. The group worked diligently from mid-morning until mid-afternoon. These Grier volunteers certainly have a lot to be proud of; their efforts make a real difference to the local river community of Tyrone and all the communities along the Little Juniata watershed. Thanks for helping take care of Mother Earth!