FLOW Fall Fundraiser – Perennials for Pollinators

Support our mission by participating in the FLOW fall fundraiser with Riverside Native Perennials.
Go to their page https://riversidenativeperennials.com/shop/
Order plants 🪴
Make sure to use the code FLOW. FLOW receives 33% of the sales!
You can pick plants up at the nursery or on September 16th from 10am-12pm at the Sawmill Wetlands, 2650 Sawmill Place Boulevard.
🍂 Fall is a great time to add plants to your gardens!


Native Edible Plant Walk with David Williams – Aug. 5 at Sawmill Wetlands

Native Edible Plant Walk with David Williams

Saturday, August 5, 10:00 – 11:30 am

At Sawmill State Wildlife Education Center (Sawmill Wetlands)

2650 Sawmill Place Blvd Columbus, OH

No need to register! Please wear closed toe shoes.

Join David Williams of FLOW for a walk around Sawmill Wetlands, learning about edible plants found in Ohio, and how to responsively harvest them, and some of their historical significance. If you missed David’s webinar in February, this will be a great way to learn more about the food growing around you!

Wild nettles are an edible herb rich in vitamins.








FLOW is seeking Central Ohio artists to turn storm drains in the Short North into public art! 

Phase One was painting 10 storm drains in the OSU campus area. Phase Two will be 10 storm drains in the Short North area!

FLOW is excited to use public art as a tool for storm drain education. We hope to connect the local businesses, residents and general public to more education on storm drains. We want the art to help explain that what goes down the storm drains exits directly into the Olentangy River.

Artists need to be 18 years old or have parental permission. Artists must demonstrate in their application that they have the ability to complete the project.

Round One: Submit application and 3-5 example(s) of current artwork. Deadline: July 14, 2023. Artist chosen for round two will be notified by July 18, 2023.

Round Two: Chosen artists will be selected and asked to submit artwork specifically for the storm drain. Artists are compensated $25 for their design. Deadline: August 9, 2023. Artists chosen to paint on storm drains in the Short North will be notified by August 11, 2023.

Round Three – Selected artists will receive $225 for painting designated storm drain murals. 

October 7th: Paint Storm Drain (October 8th Rain Date)

A panel of community members from FLOW and Short North Alliance will select the finalists at each stage.

All artists will be assigned a specific storm drain. Photo, location and storm drain dimensions will be given to artists. Storm Drains are in high traffic areas along High Street between the Short North area. Each storm drain will be marked so artists do not exceed the storm drain art boundaries.

FLOW will have an art storm drain tour on their website as well as do publicity for residents to experience the different artwork and get more information about individual artists.

FLOW volunteers will be available to answer questions and provide support during the whole process. All artists will need to sign a waiver for the painting event. Traffic cones and safety vests will be provided. Artists are allowed to bring an assistant on the day of painting.

FLOW is given permission by all selected artists to use pictures of the chosen artist’s artwork on social media, FLOW’s website, the project report and any other outlets.

Round one: Submit application and 3-5 example(s) of current artwork.

Round two: Chosen artists are selected and paid $25 to design storm drain specific artwork.

Round Three: Chosen artist will receive $225 for painting their storm drain mural on the designated storm drain.


The storm drain areas will be power washed before painting day. Paint and mixing containers. Artists need to bring their own paint brushes and any additional supplies they want. Once done the art will be sealed and an anti-graffiti coat applied.


Our theme this year is:

The Olentangy River starts here! Only rain down the drain!

Artwork should connect the public to the Olentangy River. You may be surprised to know that the storm drain empties directly into the Olentangy River and we are trying to bring attention to the fact that what goes down the drain goes to the river.


  • The physical storm drain must be incorporated into the painting but the metal storm drain will not be painted on.
  • The artwork must contain no business logos, brands, trademarks or illegal activities depicted.
  • All artwork must be public friendly.
  • FLOWOHIO.ORG must be painted at your location.
  • We also welcome you to put your signature on your artwork.



You can view the walking tour of the OSU campus storm drains here

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion:
FLOW is committed to creating and promoting an equitable, diverse and inclusive culture across in their selection process.

Spring Field Day at Sawmill Wetlands is April 15


April 15, 2023, 10am-noon

Come and join us to observe life awakening in early spring!

As the seasonal wetland fills with spring rain, many small creatures emerge in the temporary water. Their life cycle depends on the coming and going of water. We will find small insect larvae and tiny crustaceans including bright red daphnia, copepods and ostracods. We hope to see the beautiful but elusive fairy shrimp. Many larger animals such as amphibians and birds depend on these small creatures for food.
As it warms up, the forest floor also abounds with spring wildflowers: bloodroot, cut-leaved toothwort, violets, wild ginger, mayapple, trout lilies, Jacob’s ladder and wild geranium are all seen at Sawmill Wetlands. Sawmill Wetlands is also home to many birds, and several species nest here.
This is an event for the whole family. We will have tables with microscopes so you can get a close-up view of the small animals and guides to show you the different wildflowers. We also have several permanent displays. Organized by: Friends of Sawmill Wetlands (Facebook)
ODNR: Sawmill Wetlands Educational Area, 2650 Sawmill Place Blvd, Columbus

March 22 is World Water Day!

Happy World Water Day 💦
This day was adopted by the UN in December 1992. It’s a day to talk about the importance of fresh water. That’s really important to us as well! Here are five ways you can help your local watershed!

Help the watershed by reducing your lawn! 40% of the Olentangy Watershed is made up of lawns. If everyone reduced their lawn to plant native trees & plants there would be less mowing, an increase in wildlife habitat and diversity, reduced water usage, and reduced flooding. It also looks beautiful! It’s a win-win situation.

Help the watershed by making sure Only Rain Down the Drain! 💦

Reduce your use of pesticides, herbicides and fertilizers. These chemicals are often washed from your grass and plants into the nearest storm drain, where they will eventually end up in the river and harm wildlife, pollute drinking water and cause algae blooms.

The Solid Waste Authority of Central Ohio contracts with a local company to safely dispose of household hazardous waste (HHW) such as chemicals, gasoline, oil, pesticides, batteries, and more. Visit @swaco_green for information on what items are accepted and HHW drop off locations. Never dump chemicals or fertilizers down the storm drain.

Another way to make sure “Only Rain Down the Drain” is by adopting a storm drain. Find a nearby storm drain and keep it free of trash, leaves, and sticks. This prevents clogs at the storm drain, which reduces the chance of street flooding, basement back-ups and damage to property. 

One way to help the watershed is to pick up litter. The litter you see while out on a walk or driving around is very likely to end up in our rivers and streams. When taking a walk, take along a bag and pick up the trash you see. If everyone did this we’d find a lot less in our waterways.

We often find plastic water bottles, takeout containers, straws, aluminum cans, cups, cigarette butts, snack bags and masks at our cleanups

Bradford Pear, Winter Creeper and Amur Honeysuckle. What do these three have in common? They’re all invasive non-native species of plants that you can see all over Ohio. These species were introduced to the area and quickly took over. Why is it important to remove them? We remove invasive plants because they don’t offer good food or habitat for local wildlife. They also crowd out the native plants, shrubs and flowers that are greatly beneficial to the wildlife.

If you have a hedge of non-native honeysuckle in your backyard or a Bradford pear we ask that you’d consider cutting it down and planting a native tree or shrub.

If you have winter creeper taking over a tree please cut the winter creeper at the base of the tree. Winter Creeper can cause your tree to lose limbs and die over time.

FLOW will have two opportunities coming up later this year to purchase native plants for your yard. Franklin Soil & Water Conservation District also has a sale going on through the March 26th on Spring native plants and trees. (https://www.franklinswcd.org/tree-and-plant-sale


Help the watershed by planting native plants and trees. Native plants and trees not only provide food and habitat for our wildlife friends, but their extensive roots also absorb rainwater that otherwise might cause flooding.

FLOW has many upcoming opportunities to volunteer to plant trees and help at one of our tree nurseries.