Grant Opportunities

Rain Garden and Streamside Buffer Mini Grant

This Mini-Grant Program is designed to equip homeowners in Fayette County with funding and expertise to plant riparian/streamside buffers on backyard streams or install rain gardens on their residential lots. Please refer to grant requirements prior to applying. Funding for these mini grants is made possible by a grant through the Water Quality Incentive Grant Program through the City of Lexington.

Grant Requirements Who can apply?

Homeowners in Fayette county with a backyard stream will be encouraged to participate in the riparian buffer program, while those that are interested in water quality but do not live on a stream, will be encouraged to participate in the rain garden program. While the educational workshops will be required for those interested in applying for a grant, they will be open to anyone interested in learning more about backyard water quality improvement.

What is a Riparian/Streamside Buffer?

Riparian buffers, vegetated zones between streams and upland areas, are essential for reducing stream bank erosion, trapping sediment, filtering pollutants from stormwater runoff, creating wildlife habitat, and providing canopy for shading of streams. Underdeveloped or absent riparian buffer zones can negatively impact water quality and escalate local flooding issues.

What is a Rain Garden?

A rain garden is a depressed area in the landscape that collects rain water from a roof, driveway or street and allows it to soak into the ground. Planted with grasses and flowering perennials, rain gardens can be a cost effective and beautiful way to reduce runoff from your property.

Selection Process

Projects will be prioritized based on direct effect on water quality. Proximity to a local stream will take priority. The ranking criteria is attached, the selection committee will review and rank each proposal.

Eligible Reimbursements

Contractor labor, project-specific supplies, native trees and plants, equipment rental costs, and other necessary expenses as approved by the Grant Review Committee are eligible for reimbursement.

Ineligible Reimbursements

Meals, non-native plants or trees, employee salaries (for regular and temporary staff), and use or maintenance of state or local government equipment are not covered. These items may be used as in-kind match where appropriate.

Reimbursement Procedures

Reimbursements for expenses incurred during implementation of the grant will only be made when all necessary documents and/or forms have been submitted to Bluegrass Greensource. Reimbursements must conform to the line item budget approved by Bluegrass Greensource. If a grant recipient wishes to reallocate funds for approved line items or add new line items, written requests to reallocate funds within the budget must be submitted to the Watershed Coordinator for approval prior to expenditure of funds. In instances where all expenditures are not known in advance and line items are listed generally, such as “materials” or “supplies”, Bluegrass Greensource reserves the right to refuse reimbursement for any items that it feels are not adequately justified or necessary to the project. If you have any doubt, contact the Watershed Coordinator before purchasing materials or other items that fall into that category.

*If a grant recipient is unable to complete their project, or if a grant recipient completes their project under budget, any remaining grant funds will revert back to Bluegrass Greensource for future watershed improvement efforts.


Rachel Skinner,

Amy Sohner,



Grant Available March 16, 2024
Grant Application Due March 30, 2024
Notice of Award April 12, 2024
Last day to return reimbursement requests May 31, 2024