Master Rain Gardener

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. 

Email Kim Morganello with Master Rain Gardener questions at

Rain Garden for Professionals

mrg logo

Registration for the 2020 Master Rain Gardener course offering is now open. The online portion of the class will begin March 10, 2020 and the field day, included in the Certification Track, will take place on April 15 in the Charleston, SC area. Registration is open until March 20, 2020 or until full.

For more information, contact Kim Morganello


Kim Morganello
Water Resources Agent
Clemson Extension

Instructor Team
Guinn Wallover
Cal Sawyer, Ph.D.
Dan Hitchcock, Ph.D., P.E.
Chuck Jarman, P.E.
Amy Scaroni, Ph.D.
Amy Dabbs
Laura Lee Rose
Mary Martinich, PLA

Landscape Architecture Continuing Education System - Education Provider