The Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection’s (DEP) RainScapes Rewards program has increased its rebate limits to $2,500 for residential properties and $10,000 for institutional, homeowner association common areas and commercial properties. Residents currently working on a project will be eligible for the higher level rebate. Residents who have already completed a project may be eligible for the higher rebates for new projects. RainScapes techniques include rain gardens, conservation landscapes, canopy trees, green roofs, permeable pavements, rain barrels, cisterns and dry wells.
DEP approval of projects prior to installation is required for those seeking rebates, except for rain barrels. The project review process usually is completed within three weeks of application. Approved projects should be installed within six months.
Most rainfall on urban surfaces such as roofs, driveways, roads, parking lots and patios ends up as stormwater runoff, which can carry pollutants into streams and damage stream banks and habitats. In contrast, RainScapes techniques allow rainfall to soak into the ground where it can replenish groundwater and recharge streams.
Information about the RainScapes Rewards Rebate program and the rebate application is available on the County's website.
Or, attend one of the following RainScapes workshops. The RainScapes workshops offer technical assistance to encourage property owners to install eligible RainScapes techniques that reduce runoff from private property. Register online.
RainScapes Rain Garden Workshop: Learn how to transform a yard into a natural ecosystem to help soil capture and filter rainwater. Use RainScapes techniques to gain the knowledge needed to create a rain garden.
• Friday, March 1 Registration required (Course number 219249), 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., $10, Brookside Gardens, 1800 Glenallan Avenue, Wheaton
• Saturday, March 2 Registration required (Course number 219250), 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., $10, Brookside Gardens, 1800 Glenallan Avenue, Wheaton
RainScapes Rain Barrel Workshop: Learn how gathering water from rooftops can help control the negative impacts of stormwater in a yard. A rain barrel with fittings and easy instructions for installation will be provided.
• Friday, April 12 Registration required (Course number 219299*), 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., $10, Brookside Gardens, 1800 Glenallan Avenue, Wheaton
• Saturday, April 13 Registration required (Course number 219300*), 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., $10, Brookside Gardens, 1800 Glenallan Avenue, Wheaton
*Courses not yet posted online.
RainScapes Conservation Landscape Workshop: Learn about conservation-based landscaping techniques and how to design and install a conservation landscape.
• Friday, May 31 Registration required, (Course number 219301*), 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., $10, Brookside Gardens, 1800 Glenallan Avenue, Wheaton
• Saturday, June 1 Registration required, (Course number 219302 *), 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., $10, Brookside Gardens, 1800 Glenallan Avenue, Wheaton
*Courses not yet posted online.
For those unable to attend a class, DEP’s online RainScapes manuals help property owners assess a property for rainscape project suitability; design, plan and install a rainscape; and estimate cost and maintenance requirements. The manuals are available online, or use the QRCode below for smartphone users:
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