Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station [Water Resources Program]

Rain Gardens

New Jersey Demonstration Rain Gardens ~
Perkins Center for the Arts

Photograph courtesy of EP Henry

Perkins Center for the Arts
30 Irvin Avenue, Collingswood, Camden County, New Jersey 08107

Google (TM) Map Site Contact(s) History Runoff Managed
Installation Plant Layout Maintenance Photographs


Google (TM) Map:

View New Jersey Demonstration Rain Gardens in a larger map

Site Contact(s):

Mike Haberland, Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Camden and Burlington Counties


The Perkins Center for the Arts rain garden was installed to beautify the site and to intercept, treat, and infiltrate stormwater runoff from a portion of the roof as well as rainfall in the courtyard flowing through pervious pavers.

This rain garden is part of the Cooper River Watershed. The Cooper River Watershed is characterized by extensive residential and commercial development, and as a result, its streams are severely impacted by increased stormwater runoff. To address the water quality issues associated with increased stormwater runoff, demonstration projects like this rain garden are essential.

Type of Runoff Managed:

This rain garden manages stormwater runoff from a portion of the roof via a redirected downspout. The rain garden also manages runoff from the surrounding paving stones via underground piping.


The Perkins Center for the Arts rain garden was installed in July 2012. The rain garden was part of a bigger project that transformed a patch of land formerly used for parking into an Eco-Plaza and courtyard. This undertaking included the installation of Eco-Paver™ paving stones donated by EP Henry that are designed to allow water to percolate through the spacing between each stone. Cairone & Kaupp, Inc. designed the specifications for the layout of the pavers and the rain garden.

S F Pedrick Construction Company excavated the site, including a layer of marl, and hauled away 28 truckloads of material. To provide infiltration and nutrient content, coarse stone covered with geotextile fabric followed by highly organic topsoil was applied to the rain garden planting area by Schlindwein Excavating LLC. The topsoil used was donated by Leonberg Nursery.

The rain garden captures roof runoff from one downspout, which is redirected underground and fitted with a corrugated PVC pipe extension and serves as one of the inlets to the rain garden. The rain garden is also receiving runoff from the surrounding pervious pavers via underground piping from the surrounding pervious pavers. All underground piping was completed by D. Burgo Plumbing & Heating Inc. Each inlet is surrounded by Delaware River stone to slow the velocity of the incoming runoff. When the rain garden reaches capacity, it overflows to an existing storm drain.

Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Camden County and Rutgers Master Gardeners of Camden County installed the native plants in the rain garden that were purchased from North Creek Nurseries, Inc. Following planting, a three-inch layer of triple shredded hardwood mulch, also donated by Leonberg Nursery, was spread throughout the rain garden.

Approval to install this rain garden was granted by the Perkins Center for the Arts. This rain garden was funded by a 319(h) grant from the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection.

The Perkins Center for the Arts rain garden installation was featured in a variety of media outlets:

Plant Layout:

Rain Garden Map

Plant List:

Blazing Star
Blue Misflower
Creek Sedge
Joe-Pye Weed
Soft Rush

Click here to download Adobe Reader to view the rain garden map and the plant list fact sheets.


This rain garden is maintained by the Perkins Center for the Arts.


Click here for photographs of the Perkins Center for the Arts rain garden.