Hollygrove Rain Gardens

Small Center worked with a collaborative team to educate residents about the benefits of rain gardens, conduct training in their construction, and design and build the first five rain gardens in Hollygrove.

Project Dates

May 2013–August 2013


Located in a low-lying district of New Orleans between Carrollton Avenue and the Jefferson Parish line, Hollygrove suffers from street flooding, in part due to the conveyance of water from other parts of the city through the neighborhood and into canals which can be overwhelmed during major rain events.

Small Center Engagement

While conducting the collaborative Hollygrove Greenline project, Small Center created a rain garden demonstration at a community health fair to illustrate some of the ways to mitigate localized flooding in Hollygrove. Responding to great interest, Small Center then hosted a workshop which trained residents to assess their own properties and create rain gardens to capture stormwater runoff. Working with the Carrollton-Hollygrove CDC, Dana Brown & Associates, and Trinity Christian Community, the team was able to design and build the first five rain gardens on individual residential lots across the neighborhood, serving to reduce flooding, clean water, and destigmatize the idea of capturing rather than shedding stormwater.

Partner Organization

The Carrollton Hollygrove Community Development Corporation (CHCDC) is a non-profit organization whose mission is the development of affordable housing to low-and moderate-income households, and, in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, to promote neighborhood revitalization and recovery.


The rain gardens were completed in Summer 2013, and continue to serve the individual households by allowing water to infiltrate into the ground rather than flood the properties; the gardens also serve the city by preventing stormwater runoff from entering the municipal system, contributing to street flooding and requiring pumping out of the city.


Carrollton-Hollygrove Community Development Corporation (CHCDC)

Dana Brown & Associates

Longue Vue House & Gardens

Louisiana Growers

Trinity Christian Community

Team Members

Project Lead

  • Nick Jenisch


  • Dorothy Shepard


  • Maurice Cox
  • Dozenia Marshall
  • Emilie Taylor Welty

Special Thanks

  • Jarvain Bingmon
  • Dana Brown
  • Rick Webb


  • Emerging Philanthropists of New Orleans
  • Surdna Foundation