What Can You Do With The Extra Rain?

Spring is here! You can tell by the fickleness of the weather. One minute it's sunny and the next it's dumping hail. We need rain for our gardens and healthy streams, but what to do with the rain when there is too much of it? Here are some ideas from our Community Conservation Team.

A 175-gallon tote for catching rain water.

Homeowner Spotlight: Pam Kepford

Everett resident Pam Kepford has spent the last couple years transforming her entire yard into a sustainable food oasis. This year, her mission was installing a rainwater catchment system at her home. However, Pam’s garden was so large, she needed to look bigger than rain barrels. She is currently in the process of installing two 175-gallon totes at her home to capture and collect rain water. She has built a sturdy pad for them to sit on and is currently working on stacking the totes and connecting them together. Soon, Pam will have 350 gallons of free water on hand to use during the upcoming dry summer months.

Rain Gardens

Rain gardens are a specialized type of garden that has a slight bowl shape and that uses well-draining, nutrient-rich soil. Unlike lawns, they take little regular upkeep and can be beautiful, colorful landscaping features. Rain gardens also help filter runoff and release the filtered stormwater back into the environment at a more natural rate, rather than running off straight into our sewer systems.

Interested in installing a rain garden on your property? Contact our Community Conservation Team at ccteam@snohomishcd.org for questions or to schedule a free site visit to determine feasibility for a rain garden on your property.

Rain Barrels

Rain catchment is a great way to capture runoff from your roof and save it for later use, like during the summer when your plants need watering. Rain barrels are the most popular method for rain catchment, as they are relatively cheap, easy to transport, and easy to install.

They are also extremely versatile and customizable - you can hook up as many rain barrels in one system as you can fit, and you can even paint your rain barrels to match your house or to be ornamental. You can then use the water captured by rain barrels to water your lawn, plants, or even vegetable garden!

Purchase a rain barrel from the Snohomish Conservation District for $50 plus tax. 

Rain Beds

If you would like to use a rain barrel system to water your raised beds, consider purchasing a rain bed from us. In a rain bed system, your rain barrels connect directly to your nearby raised beds, which then uses a specialized gutter developed by our District Engineer Derek Hann to distribute water evenly throughout the raised bed.


Watch a video about rain beds on our website to see it in action, or buy a rain bed system from the Snohomish Conservation District for $300 plus tax.

There are so many options! Be sure to reach out to the Community Conservation Team if you have specific questions about your property, where it may make more sense for us to come out and see it to provide our insights.