Many wetlands exist today within the Community. Plants such as cattail, arrowweed, willow, cottonwood, yerba mansa, and mesquite, that have traditional uses, grow in or around wetlands. Wetlands are areas with an abundance of slow-moving water, which provide a habitat for many plants and animals. Within the Community, both man-made and naturally-formed wetlands exist. The Community created two wetlands: the Cottonwood and Lehi Wetlands. These two man-made resources utilize the natural functions of wetlands to improve the quality of water going into the Salt River channel by filtering pollutants and erosion control.
The Cottonwood Wetland—the Community's first wetland—built in 2003—is a project near the Salt River and the Loop 101/202 interchange. This wetland is maintained by EPNR's WQP staff, and is regularly monitored for water quality parameters. The Community's second treatment wetland—the Lehi Wetland—built in 2008—was also constructed in an area to reduce pollutant loading to the Salt River channel. These wetlands serve as habitat for wildlife, an attractive Community amenity, and an educational and recreational resource.
The wetlands within the Community have become places of education for youth, adults, and Elders. Guided tours and workshops are provided through EPNR. Please contact us through the hotline if you would like to request more information on tours or other activities.