Wetlands are the kidneys of the earth - a natural filter of toxins in water moving through the landscape. Runoff from parking areas, turf, and managed gardens flows through the Created Wetlands at the UT Gardens, helping to protect the Tennessee River from nonpoint source pollution originating from the urban landscape. The effort is a demonstration for homeowners as well as for municipal governmentson on howto turn a drainage problem into an amenity. Created wetlands also help restore the vaulable habitats or many organisms that use wetlands during their lifespans. Make a visit to see all the wildlife living in the wetland ecosystem right here just off Neyland Drive near downtown Knoxville.   

This Created Wetland Plant List provides information on the native East Tennessee plants growing here that may also work for you on your property in those challenging wet spots or along waters edge. 


​Experience the Wetlands:

An 80-foot boardwalk spans the largest pond at the wetlands, allowing visitors to experience the wetlands from an entirely unique perspective, just like this budding scientist. 

Garden Campers play wetland bingo to explore the life in the wetlands.

Garden Campers play Wetland Bingo to explore the life in the wetlands. 

Create a Wetland of Your Own:


If you have yard space and a source of water, even if it's just your rooftop downspouts, then you can build a wetland of your very own. Here are some resources from trusted partners:

​What to Look for:

Gray tree frogs rest among the irises that outline their breeding ground. Click here for Find the Frog Photo Hunt Gallery. 


Dragonfly exoskeletons can be found under the broad leaves of emergent vegetation like this Arrowhead and Pickerel Weed around the edges of the pools. As nymphs, dragonflies feast on mosquito larvae in the water. 

Juvenile painted turtles are illusive but can be spotted by the patient passerby. They sun on floating woody debris and snack on the abundant duck weed in the ponds.

Associate Professor of Ecological Engineering
Biosystems Engineering & Soil Science Department
James Newburn
Interim Director
University of Tennessee Gardens, Knoxville

Stormwater Coordinator
Facility Services

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