Building A Rain Bed
For the D.I.Y.'ers out there, here are the steps for you to build your own rain bed.
First, you will need a rain barrel system, raised on cinder blocks to help gravity flow. Below is a how-to video for installing your own rain barrel(s). Simple tools are needed and a 55-gallon drum. You can buy any of these items at cost through Snohomish Conservation District now and make it a weekend project!
How to Install Your Own Rain Barrel System (Video - 9:58)
You can find more thoughtful steps on this page of our website regarding how to set up a rain barrel or a multiple barrel system.
Here are some photographs showing greater detail of each rain bed component. Click on the images to view descriptions of what you are seeing.
Next, an 8 x 4 foot raised wood bed is needed. Liners are used on the inside of the bed. Raised beds are filled with ‘bioretention mix’, which is available at local soil suppliers. This soil mix is traditionally used in rain gardens and is made of compost and sand. Plants love it!
Lastly, it is time to plant! Rain beds are ideal for those plants that need a little extra water - like annuals, cut flowers, and yes- even edibles! Are crops safe to irrigate with rainwater from roofs? The answer is yes! Research has given the green light for watering edible plants with rainwater.
Snohomish Conservation District sells the rain bed materials at cost. You can see a demonstration of the full system at the Plant Sale on February 10, 2018 at the Monroe Fairgrounds.
Cost (plus applicable sales tax):
- $300 - Full system, which includes 4 rain barrels, plumbing, bed, gutter and liner (not including installation)
- $50 - Rain barrel only
- $20 - Gutter for rain bed
- $10 - Liner for rain bed
Please contact Derek Hann at 425-377-7012 or derek (at) snohomishcd.org for more information or to have the Snohomish Conservation District come out for a site visit.