Howard’s Branch

Howard’s Branch

ANNAPOLIS, MD

Wetland Restoration and Atlantic white-cedar Recovery Project  The Howard’s Branch Wetland Enhancement Project, completed in 2001, was initiated with the object of realizing simultaneously the economic, aesthetic, and environmental benefits in a constructed wetland environment. The project site was a stream bed that had experienced considerable stormwater flow and resulting erosion. The wetland construction resulted in a less erosive path for the stream, as well as providing habitat for Atlantic White Cedar (Chamaecyparis thyoides (L.) B.S.P.), Large Cranberry (Vaccinium macrocarpon), and Low-Bush Blueberry (Vaccinium angustifolium). These plants not only assist with sediment control, but also help to reduce nitrate and phosphate quantities in stormwater exiting the wetland. Stormwater management is one problem that invites the application of environmentally friendly techniques such as constructed wetlands. Wetlands can perform nutrient removal and sediment removal functions when stormwater flows through them, and they have the added benefit of providing habitat to many plant and animal species.
This project successfully mimics the historical floodplain function of a braided stream system which utilizes the entire floodplain. This technique is designed to safely pass the 100 year storm event.