Master Rain Gardener

Certification Course

The Master Rain Gardener Certification Course is a 6-week step-by-step training that teaches individuals how to design and build a rain garden. Courses will take place weekly, in-person, at the Stark SWCD office building located at 2650 Richville Drive NE, Massillon, OH 44646. 

Certification will be given to students that attend class, perform the associated homework assignments, and construct or adopt a rain garden. The course is $25.00 per person and includes a metal Certified Master Rain Gardener sign to display proudly. Seating is limited and preregistration is required.


Individuals interested in this course can view the syllabus to see what the course entails, or can inquire for more information by calling our office at 330-451-7646 or by visiting our office.


For individuals interested in registering for the course, complete the form below or visit our office with paymentPayment is required to reserve your spot.

The Master Rain Gardener certification course is a step-by-step training that provides individuals with the necessary knowledge and resources to properly design and build a rain garden within their property. 

Certification criteria: Attend all mandatory classes, complete homework assignments, and install or adopt a rain garden. Students are responsible for scheduling a site visit with Stark SWCD staff to verify rain garden. Metal certified signs will be awarded upon site visit.

2023 Master Rain Gardener Schedule


Considering the course? See what's in store!



Courses run Thursdays from 10 a.m. to 11:45 a.m.

at 2650 Richville Dr. SE, Massillon, OH 44646

Class I: September 15, 2022

Class II: September 22, 2022

Class III: September 29, 2022

Class IV: October 6, 2022 (Field Trip)

Class V: October 13, 2022

Class VI: October 20, 2022


What is a Rain Garden?

During storms, water lands on lawns and hard surfaces like roofs and driveways. As water moves across these surfaces, it picks up pollutants such as automotive oils, salts, fertilizers, and pet waste. This polluted water is typically collected in storm drains. Pipes carry this dirty water to nearby streams, rivers, and lakes where it discharges. This polluted water contributes to poor water quality and degrades wildlife habitat.  

Rain gardens are bowl-shaped, landscaped features designed to intentionally and temporarily capture dirty runoff water! Rain gardens temporarily detain this water while allowing it to filter into the soil below, protecting local waterbodies & wildlife!

Benefits of a Rain Garden

  1. Rain gardens can increase property values by adding beautiful landscape aesthetics to the property;

  2. Rain gardens can protect properties by helping to reduce flooding;

  3. Rain gardens reduce stress on municipal storm sewer systems by reducing the amount of water going to those systems;

  4. Rain gardens reduce water pollution both locally and regionally;

  5. Rain gardens recharge groundwater supplies;

  6. Rain gardens double as pollinator habitat and therefore support butterflies, bees, hummingbirds, and the rest;

  7. Rain gardens are an affordable option for managing drainage issues;

  8. Rain gardens can be easy to create

Rain Garden Through the Seasons

February 2022
February 2022

A snow-covered rain garden. When the snow melts, this water will soak into the rain garden and replenish the ground water.

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March 2022
March 2022

Early spring rain fills the rain garden. Dormant plants will soon start to grow.

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Late September
Late September

The flowers have begun to set seed. This seed can be harvested and used to grow the rain garden or can be left for the birds.

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February 2022
February 2022

A snow-covered rain garden. When the snow melts, this water will soak into the rain garden and replenish the ground water.

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Become a Master Rain Gardener!

2022 Fall Course Registration
Join our waiting list!

Become a certified Master Rain Gardener by registering and submitting payment to Stark SWCD at 2650 Richville Drive SE, Suite 100, Massillon, OH 44646.

Don't wait. Seating is limited!


Above photo: Alumni Master Rain Gardener shows off their hard work and dedication during course field trip. Students have the opportunity to ask questions, learn from their experiences, and gain peer resources.

Below photos: Course graduates pose with their successfully installed rain garden!

Page photo credit belongs to Washtenaw County Water Resources Commissioner's Office Master Rain Gardener program

Miller by Linda Prieskorn 2015_edited_edited.jpg