Brookfield Conservation Commission – Educational Workshop


For immediate release
Linda Carlisle
Conservation Commission

Brookfield Conservation Commission to host Educational Workshop
on managing rainwater using native landscaping bioretention techniques


BROOKFIELD, IL, September 15 — The Village of Brookfield’s Conservation Commission is pleased to present an educational workshop for residents interested in finding a beautiful, natural way for lessening flooding in their yards.

The workshop, titled “NATURAL FLOOD CONTROL – Sustainable Landscaping and Using Flow-Through- Planters to Manage Water in Your Yard” will offer residents inspirational ideas for how to bring raingardens and flow-through-planters into their gardens to add beauty while reducing excess rainwater.

“Brookfield residents tend to have a love-hate relationship with rainwater,” says Commissioner Bridget Jakubiak. “We love the water when it keeps our plants lush and green and our water table and creek at a healthy level. But in yards that have low lying areas that are prone to flooding, a rainy season can be more of a curse than a blessing.”

That’s how native landscaping and flow-through-planters can help. These beautiful landscaping solutions help homeowners use natural, water-friendly plant species – many that are indigenous to Illinois – to minimize excess water on their property.

“Homeowners may not realize how the simple choices they make in their garden, could result in a substantial environmental impact in our community,” says Susan Rohner, who will be speaking at the workshop.

These more sustainable landscape choices have a great potential to:

  • Reduce standing water in your grass and basement
  • Amend, hard compacted and degraded soils
  • Dry-up wet areas using specific plant species
  • Make your landscape more resistant to climate change
  •  Minimize your use of gasoline and reduce your carbon footprint
  • Purify the water that runs off your yard into Salt Creek
  • Lower your water bill
  • Save you time and expenses in chemicals and fertilizers


“Flow-through-Planters are only one of many flood management alternatives for Brookfield residents,” Rohner said. She explained these landscaped planters hold water coming off your downspout and use flood- and drought-tolerant native plants. They can be custom made or retrofitted from purchasing an existing container.

“These planters are useful when residents have a narrow side yard and become a beautiful extension of one’s home,” Rohner said. “In the workshop, I will explain how residents can create their own and discuss other sustainable landscape options. I apply most of these same techniques at the Forest Preserve of Cook County with our in-house landscape Crew and would like to share these methods with my neighbors, who could certainly benefit as well.”

Brookfield residents who are interested in learning more about these rainwater management solutions are invited to attend the workshop which will be held at the Brookfield Public Library on Wednesday, October 9 at 7:00PM.  For more information, please contact

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About the Brookfield Conservation Commission
The Brookfield Conservation Commission works to preserve, protect, and restore the natural resources of the Village of Brookfield through education, outreach, and community involvement. To learn more, visit

About the Speaker
Susan Rohner is
Landscape Design professional and Project Coordinator with the Forest Preserves of Cook County (FPCC). She obtained her degree in Landscape Architecture from the University of Illinois and has worked professionally with native plants, public landscape design and sustainable park development for over 11 years. Currently, she oversees the creation of landscape special projects, and sustainable initiatives using native plants in the Landscape Maintenance Department at the FPCC. She also directs a new, in-house Crew of five staff whose objective is to care for plants within the most visible Forest Preserve locations across 10 sites in Cook County. Her landscapes meet the needs for looking beautiful to people, while fostering greater plant diversity and a higher quality ecology for wildlife, birds, and beneficial insects.


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