BECOME A WEED WARRIOR!bioswales

Assist the City of West Des Moines with maintenance of bioswales located in West Des Moines parks.

Bioswale: a multi-purpose stormwater management practice that provides an environmentallyfriendly alternative to storm sewers. By using a permeable soil bed and perforated subdrain tile, bioswales infiltrate water from frequent, small rains (1.25 inches or less). During heavy rains, bioswales convey runoff in a non-erosive manner.

Learn more about Bioswales here.

With bioswales being used more frequently in park planning and landscape design, maintenance of plant species and control of weeds in bioswales has become a more time and work-intensive task. Because the use of herbicides kills not only weeds but also desired forbs in and around bioswales, nuisance weeds need to be hand pulled or cut. This, of course, takes time, energy, and commitment.

Weed Warriors (neighborhood volunteers) are needed to helpbioswale2 maintain bioswales in specified WDM parks. Weed Warriors will be taught how to identify and remove weeds in the bioswale. Weed Warriors must commit to yearly training led by Parks Maintenance staff, as well as to hands-on weed management in their selected bioswale at least two (2) times between May 1 and September 30 each year. Parks Maintenance staff will create a “prescription” for the management of each bioswale. This “prescription” will identify weeds that should be pulled, plants that should remain in the bioswale, the frequency of hand pulling, and instruction on proper management methods and techniques. Other duties may include placement and raking of mulch and/or control of volunteer trees.

Park bioswales included in the Weed Warrior program (w/ more to be determined):

•             Wild Rose Park (6801 Cody Drive)

•             Valley View Park (255 81st Street)

•             Fairmeadows Park (543 22nd Street)

•             Woodland Hills Park (1230 South 95th Street)

If you are interested in becoming a Weed Warrior, please contact the WDM Parks and Recreation Department at 515-222-3444 or by email at parkrec@wdm.iowa.gov.