Master Rain Gardener

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Master Rain Gardener is a certification program focused on rain garden and rainwater harvesting system design and  installation. The Master Rain Gardener (MRG) program will provide design standards and the knowledge-based skill set necessary to install rain gardens and rainwater harvesting systems on a residential scale. Rain gardens and rainwater harvesting offer residents and landscape professionals with a management tool for flooding on property, erosion prevention, incorporation of native plants and backyard habitat into the lawn, and the establishment of a low-irrigation landscape. The Master Rain Gardener program is a hybrid, multi-week curriculum allowing for self-paced online learning modules, hands-on field experience, and a two-track option to meet the needs of diverse audiences. 

Online course content will include:

  • Rain garden site assessment, soil analysis, design standards, construction, plant selection, design elements, maintenance, and more.
  • Rainwater harvesting system sizing, pre-filtration devices, component considerations, water use and safety measures.

Both course tracks include hands-on components that provide participants with the opportunity to apply practices learned. 

 The Certification Track is intended for contractors, landscape designers, landscape installers and other professionals who will install residential-scale rain gardens and rainwater harvesting systems for pay.  In order to achieve certification, individuals must complete four weeks of Master Rain Gardener online course content, attend a full-day, in-person training and pass the course exam.  Recognition as a certified Master Rain Gardener can serve as a marketing tool for professionals. The Certification track is open to residential audiences who wish to participate in the field day.

The Letter of Completion Track is intended for home gardeners, Master Gardeners, Master Naturalist, and other residential audiences. Attendance in the field day is not included in this track. In order to receive a Letter of Completion, individuals must complete four weeks of Master Rain Gardener online course content, complete hands-on class assignments and weekly quizzes. This track can be used as continuing education credits for Master Gardeners and Master Naturalist. 

The next course offering is planned for fall 2018. To be notified when registration is open, please email Kim Counts Morganello, Clemson Extension Water Resources Agent at

Rain Garden for Professionals