Featured This Homeowner is Protecting Ocean Health By Starting in Her Own Backyard!
Among the hustle and bustle usually occurring along Kaiolena Drive in Lanikai, most people don’t even realize that behind a tall mock orange tree hedge is the lush and peaceful property of 25 year Lanikai resident. Located directly across from Lanikai Park, this property is an excellent example of beautiful landscaping that also includes best management practices for addressing stormwater runoff on a residential property. Susan has installed pervious pavers, rain chains and lush vegetation throughout her property, which allows all the stormwater that is generated on her property to stay on her property. For the homeowner, these home improvements added to the aesthetic of her property and unbeknownst to her, she is actually helping to protect the beautiful turquoise waters and important coral reef ecosystem off of Lanikai Beach, just a block away from her residence.
The homeowner originally contacted HOK because she was interested in installing a rain garden on her property. When HOK staff arrived at her house to do an initial site assessment, they were extremely impressed by the exemplary stormwater best management practices that had already been implemented on the property.
In 2000, the homeowner decided to rip out the unsightly black asphalt in her driveway and install more aesthetically appealing pavers from Futura Stone (www.fturastonehawaii.com). She chose AQUAPave, which are pervious pavers that allow stormwater to be absorbed into the ground beneath the pavement. Pervious pavers are an attractive and innovative solution for dealing with stormwater. AQUAPave boasts lower construction and life-cycle costs; elimination of surface runoff; and removal of 99% of oil and hydrocarbons and 97% of heavy metals, which are common pollutants from cars parked on driveways and roads.
The homeowner also disconnected her downspouts and installed rain chains (http://www.rainchainsstore.com) as a beautiful addition to her outdoor landscape. In addition to aesthetic appeal, rain chains also help to slow down the water flowing from a roof and gutter system and allow the water to slowly enter the soil beneath the rain chain, so that it has a better chance of replenishing the aquifer.
Lastly, this property has beautiful landscaping, with lush vegetation covering almost every square foot of her property. Some of the native plants on her property include akia, kalo and kupuku fern. There is also a nice assortment of tropical plants including mango, ginger, plumaria and lauaʻe ferns.
Since Susan’s property is so densely vegetated, the plants act as a sponge during storms and soak up all of the rain water so that no water even has a change to leave her property and enter a storm drain, stream or go into the nearby ocean.
Susan is an exemplary homeowner in that she is concerned with taking care of her home. By installing a few key items on her property, she is doing her part in helping to protect ocean health by restoring the āina: mauka to makai.
The mission of Hui o Ko`olaupoko is to protect ocean health by restoring the `aina: mauka to makai. This is done in partnership with stakeholders including interested citizens, non-governmental organizations, government, educational institutions and businesses while using and focusing on sound ecological principles, community input, and cultural heritage.