Sustainability

The Village encourages all residents to consider making environmentally friendly and ecologically responsible decisions. Living a more sustainable lifestyle can help protect the environment and sustain its natural resources for current and future generations.

Rain Barrels

Rain Barrels are simple, efficient, low-cost methods for homeowners to collect and recycle water. Rain barrels are large containers that capture rainwater at the end of your downspout. It is estimated that during the hot summer months the average homeowner uses 40% of their household water in the yard.

  • Collecting the mineral rich and chlorine-free rain that falls on your roof can help your houseplants, gardens and reduce your water bill.
  • Modern rain barrels are sealed and safe around children and insect resistant.
  • A hose spigot on the front makes the captured rain water available for distribution.
  • Keeping the rain that falls on your property utilized and not allowing it to run off will help recharge the water supply and reduce the stress on our creeks and rivers.
  • A quarter-inch of rain falling on the average home yields over 200 gallons of water.
  • Using collected rain as a resource for gardens and around your home can have a dramatic impact on water quality in our rivers and streams and will help reduce flooding.

Cost

The Metropolitan Water Reclamation District (MWRD) is making it easier for residents living in our service delivery area to purchase rain barrels. Homeowners can collect and reuse storm water by installing a rain barrel which are available for purchase year-round at $58 plus tax. The price includes an installation kit and home delivery for all residents living in the MWRD’s service area. Up to two rain barrels per household may be purchased from our vendor. For an additional $20 their contractor will install the rain barrel.

Rain barrels are repurposed plastic barrels designed to collect rainwater from rooftops via a disconnected downspout for reuse. The rain barrel program is a part of the MWRD’s green infrastructure initiative and supports our mission of managing storm water and reducing water pollution.

Specifications

  • Capacity - 55 gallons
  • Colors - Blue, Black, Terra Cotta, Grey
  • Diameter - Approximately 21 inches
  • Height - Approximately 34 inches

Native Plantings

Have you ever considered planting a portion of your yard with native plants? Unlike a high maintenance lawn, native plants are well-adapted to the hot and cold extremes of our environment requiring little or no watering once established. These plants do not require mowing, decreasing the amount of fuel used to maintain your yard and a reduction in chemicals otherwise needed to maintain a green grassy lawn. In addition, natives also crowd out weeds allowing you spend less time on garden maintenance. Native vegetation soaks up pollution, captures and stores carbon dioxide, filters and dilutes noise, dust and exhaust pollution, retards erosion and loss of top soil and prevents siltation of our streams, rivers and lakes. Another added benefit, indigenous flowers and grasses to the Chicago area attract butterflies and birds and offer beautiful color, texture and add interest to your yard throughout the seasons.

Examples of Native Plants

Examples of native plants include:

  • Brown-Eyed Susan
  • Common Columbine
  • Common Milkweed
  • Jacob’s Ladder
  • Purple Coneflower
  • Virginia Bluebell
  • Virginia Creeper
  • Wild Leek

Additional Information

For more information about native plants and how to get started using natives in your own yard, try the following websites or call the Village Hall at 708-354-0225 for more information:

  • Chicago Botanic Garden
  • Grand Prairie Friends of Illinois
  • Illinois Native Plant Guide by the U.S. Department of Agriculture
  • Illinois Native Plant Society

Note: the websites listed offer information on native plants and some include lists of nurseries that stock native plants. This list is certainly not all inclusive and is meant to serve merely as a helpful starting point for learning more about how you can incorporate native plantings into your own yard.