Garden Design and Plants

Step 2. Garden Design and Plants

Determine the planting zone you are in for plant hardiness and geographic location, this will help you select the right plants for your region. Will the garden be in a sunny or shady spot? What would you like to attract to your garden? Butterflies, birds?

Choose your Plants

  • For best results, select native plants suitable for the geography and site specific conditions of your rain garden
  • Select a variety of native, flowers, ferns, grasses, shrubs and small trees that will provide color and interest throughout the season
  • Group the plants together for the most impact, and estimate one small plant per square foot.
  • Select plants can also provide food and habitat for birds, butterflies and bees.

Resources for Garden Design and Plants

  • The following websites and publications offer a range of garden designs and templates, taking in consideration geographic location and site specific conditions (coastal, piedmont, sun, shade).
  • There are also garden designs featuring plant materials that will attract birds and butterflies to further enhance your enjoyment! Native, non-invasive plants are encouraged as they are best suited for local climate and site characteristics.

Design Templates

Native Plant Resources

  • Delaware Nature Society
  • Delaware Cooperative Extension’s, Native Plants for Delaware’s Landscapes
  • Low Impact Development center’s Rain Garden Templates, Rain Garden Plants


Step 1. Locate & Prep | Step 2. Design | Step 3. Construction | Step 4. Maintenance