Plantings help beautify Loch Lomond area
Neighborhood residents walking around a rain garden in the Loch Lomond subdivision in Mundelein (from left) are Fritz Chesek, Grace Humphery, 5, Hillary Peters, 18, Kay Dickman, Tony Titus, Deloris O'Connell and Barb Carroll that they worked on to beautify from non native growth to a garden with native plants including Black-eyed Susans, purple cone flowers, various sedges, Canada anemone, wild red columbine, zizia aurea and others. | Michael Schmidt~Sun-Times Media
Updated: September 3, 2012 12:37PM
MUNDELEIN -- A dedicated group of Loch Lomond volunteers has taken steps to improve the water quality of the lake and beautify their neighborhood through the planting of rain gardens, native plants and other efforts.
With the help of a in-kind grant of $5,750 from the Lake County Stormwater Management Commission, the volunteer group planted two demonstration native rain gardens along the lake of the Mundelein subdivision to showcase the viability of rain gardens for individual property owners and to help mitigate stormwater runoff into the lake.
“We’re instituting programs to try to stabilize the shoreline through the introduction of native plants,” said Loch Lomond resident Fritz Chesek, who helped secure the grant for the installation of the rain gardens.
This spring, volunteers planted rain gardens with native plants along two shorelines at the north and south end of the lake. The rain gardens will absorb water runoff that typically runs off the streets and carries pollutants into the lake.
Several volunteers spent a day in May planting the gardens at the two locations. Other residents also have supplied water from their homes to help maintain the gardens during the summer drought. Mundelein public works crews also assisted the volunteers in removing non-native species of brush.
“It was nice to see a mixture of senior citizens, families and young people, all working side by side,” said Sally Pilcher, Chesek’s husband, who also helped lead the volunteer effort.
‘Save the lake’
Kay Dickman, a senior volunteer and Loch Lomond who participated in the planting of native plants for the rain garden, said she thinks it’s a great project for the neighborhood.
“I think it’s an amazing thing to do,” she said. “The whole idea is not only to beautify the area but we’re trying to save the lake.”
Hillary Peters, a college student from Mundelein, also helped out with the planting of the rain garden.
“I love gardening and outdoor stuff,” she said. “I’ve learned a lot about soil depletion in my studies and introducing native plants can help with nutrients in the soil.”
In addition to planting the two rain gardens, volunteers from the Loch Lomond area also removed weeds and planted flowers and other plants in a small park-like area on Banbury Road in Loch Lomond which had become overgrown with weeds and an eyesore. The beautified area is now called Banbury Park.
“Loch Lomond volunteers worked in conjunction with the Loch Lomond Property Owners Association and the village of Mundelein to beautify and shepherd a neglected area,” said Pilcher.
The volunteers were awarded a proclamation for their beautification and lake conservation efforts at the June 25 meeting of the Mundelein Village Board. Among those recognized in the village were Pilcher; Chesek; Dickman; Peters; Tony Titus; Katie, Kelly and Randy Cook; Arlene Doran; Kelly and Larry Happ; Kristine Hiegel; Delores O’Connell; Mary Kingsberry; Brad Paul; Jean and Gabby Potillo; Leigh Rogers; and Barb, Jim and Michael Carroll.