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Storm Water Runoff a Threat to Hitchcock Woods

Making It Grow Minute
SC Public Radio

Hello Gardeners, I’m Amanda McNulty with Clemson Extension and Making It Grow. Each week on Making It Grow Terasa Lott gives us a water quality tip. Rain barrels and rain gardens are designed to help stop storm water runoff from properties, water that carries pollutants, invasive plant seeds, and causes erosion. Small steps but they can help. However, Hitchcock Woods in Aiken receives most of the storm water from the City of Aiken via underground pipes. One event resulted in thirty-five million gallons of water rushing into the woods over nine hours. A massive gully twenty-five feet wide and seventy feet deep has been carved out and soil deposition has killed bottomland hardwoods. A task force of city officials and Hitchcock Woods foundation members is working to find solutions to this problem considered to be the greatest threat to the health of this two-thousand acre urban forest which is open to the public year round. 

Amanda McNulty is a Clemson University Extension Horticulture agent and the host of South Carolina ETV’s Making It Grow! gardening program. She studied horticulture at Clemson University as a non-traditional student. “I’m so fortunate that my early attempts at getting a degree got side tracked as I’m a lot better at getting dirty in the garden than practicing diplomacy!” McNulty also studied at South Carolina State University and earned a graduate degree in teaching there.