The GreenSpot
Rain Barrel Program

The GreenSpot Rain Barrel program has closed for the winter season. Check back in the spring for news about the 2015 Rain Barrel Program. Please call (614)486-9613 for related questions.

Developed by the City of Columbus and Franklin Soil and Water Conservation District in 2011, the GreenSpot Rain Barrel Program is open to Franklin County residents and participating municipalities. The GreenSpot Rain Barrel program has reached over 2,000 participants in Franklin County.

The program helps homeowners understand how stormwater runoff affects local water quality, streambank erosion and flooding and how they can save money and conserve water and energy by not using potable water for landscaping or gardens.

Learn about the benefits of rain barrels and the hazards of stormwater and purchase your 45-gallon terracotta-colored rain barrel either online or at an in-person workshop. It's just $55 either way!

Below is the Online Course and Quiz, but if you would rather attend an in-person workshop,  click here to be directed to our in-person workshop registration page.

Start Here:

Why join GreenSpot? For a couple of really good reasons, actually. One, it's a small thing you can do to make a big impact on the health and future of Columbus. Two, it couldn't be easier.

It's simple, really. It takes just three key commitments to making your home a greener place: Conserve Energy, Conserve Water, and Reduce, Reuse & Recycle. With just a few small changes you can help the environment and create a more environmentally-friendly home.

What can you do to go GREEN in your home? Register as a GreenSpot!

*Registering as a GreenSpot member does not register you automatically for a rain barrel. You still need to complete the online course and quiz or attend an in-person workshop.

Ready to get green? Make Your Household a GreenSpot!


You do not need to wait for confirmation from GreenSpot to move on to the Online Self-Study Course, you can continue now.

Next Step Take the Online Course

Take the Online Course and Quiz

Begin the Online Course Now
This course will:
  • Walk you through a presentation on storm water, rain barrels and water conservation.
  • Give you a 10-question quiz at the end of the presentation covering what you've just learned.
  • Reward you with the opportunity to purchase a low-cost rain barrel after you pass the quiz with a 70%.
  • When you're ready to start the course, click on the button below.

Franklin Soil and Water Conservation District has a no-refund policy for all of its programs (unless we are at fault). Please consider this before you order.

This course is available to Franklin County residents and participating municipalities only. See eligibility and restrictions below for questions.

Eligibility & Restrictions.

Partnering Communities


Frequently Asked Questions

Mosquito Alert!

West Nile virus is increasingly becoming a concern in the Midwest, as an increasing number of illnesses and deaths are blamed on the virus. Mosquitoes tend to breed in wet areas, and the mosquito that carries and transmits West Nile virus is found where there is decaying organic matter and wet conditions. Recommendations to reduce populations of mosquitoes include source reduction of mosquito breeding sites and avoidance of biting mosquitoes. Recommendations for reducing breeding sites include eliminating or emptying artificial water collection containers described as prime breeding spots for the mosquito species implicated in the transmission of West Nile Virus. Mosquitoes can breed in as little as 7 to 10 days.

  • Empty barrels on a regular basis after and/or before a rainfall to control mosquito breeding cycles.
  • Use Mosquito larvicide tablets such as Mosquito Dunks ® inside barrels as needed to assure the control of breeding and development.
  • Clean all gutters and downspouts. Leaves, twigs, seeds, and other organic matter will create a water dam in which mosquito larvae can grow.
  • Perform regular inspections of your system to make sure that there are no cracks or leaks, and that all fittings and seals around the valves are intact.

By taking these precautions, your properly protected rain barrels can actually help prevent unwanted mosquito breeding by eliminating the standing water which results from a heavy rainfall.

What are the product specifications for the rain barrel?

The EarthMinded™ RainStation45™ is a simple-to-use and attractive rain barrel for home rainwater collection and storage. The large capacity rain barrel connects to your downspout and automatically collects runoff water from your home's roof.

Capacity: 45 gallons
Color: Terracotta
Dimensions: 35.35” tall x 23.5” diameter

  • Includes all parts for easy installation
  • Flexifit™ diverter automatically passes excess water through the downspout to prevent flooding. Fits 3.75” x 5” downspouts.
  • Hole saw included, installs in minutes
  • A large-opening lid with locking feature for safety, reverses for planter option
  • Sealed system keeps out mosquitoes, pests and sunlight
  • Durable construction 30% recycled content, HDPE with 5 year UV inhibitor, for years of trouble free use
  • Valued at $119

When will I receive my rain barrel?

If you are making your purchase via the online program, you will be required to pick up your rain barrel at the Franklin Soil and Water Conservation District office, 1404 Goodale Blvd., Columbus 43212, Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., with some Saturday pick-up dates scheduled once a month.

If you have opted to attend an in-person workshop, you will receive your rain barrel at the conclusion of the event. Special shipping, delivery or pickup arrangements will not be made. This ensures that rain barrels can be provided at a low cost.

What if I cannot make a rain barrel workshop?

There are many workshop dates scheduled. If you cannot make it to any of the scheduled workshops, try ordering online to allow you the opportunity to pick up Monday though Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at our office.

Will I need a large vehicle or truck in order to transport my rain barrel home?

No. The rain barrel can be easily lifted into the back seat of a car as small as a Mini Cooper/Smart Car for transportation home.

Can I purchase more than one rain barrel?

Due to high demand, we can offer only one discounted rain barrel per household. If you have participated in the Green-Spot Rain Barrel Program in previous years you are not eligible to participate or purchase a barrel through this program. However, rain barrels of the same model or similar are sold at many local retailers.

If I am unsatisfied with my rain barrel, can I return my purchase?

No. All sales are final. Franklin Soil and Water Conservation District has a NO-Refund policy for all of its programs (unless we are at fault). Please consider this before registering. An immediate family member may attend in your place, or, if there is another workshop still available, you may attend that one if you contact us three days before.

Do I have to purchase any other required parts?

All required parts and attachments are included with the rain barrel. You will need a hand drill and a screw driver for installation. The hole saw attachment for a drill does come with the rain barrel. There are some optional items you may want to consider purchasing at a local retailer, including a riser to elevate your barrel, pumps and soaker hoses. You will learn about these options and local retailers during your workshop.

Do I have to purchase and/or construct a rain barrel riser/stand?

A riser is optional but recommended, in order to optimize water pressure. Ideally, the barrel should be elevated two feet from the ground. There are many ways to build a riser and ideas on how to do this will be provided to you during your workshop.

Can you help me install my rain barrel?

No. However, it is easy to install your new rain barrel and instructions will be provided during your workshop. You can download a rain barrel user manual on our website to learn about the installation process. If you cannot install the barrel on your own, you can hire a local ‘handyman’ business to assist you.

What are the requirements for the in-person workshop?

You can see all restrictions and eligibility requirements here, but this is the short and sweet version.

  • Attendance is mandatory, and you must arrive at least 15 minutes before start time.
  • You must have joined the GreenSpot program (
  • You must be a resident of City of Columbus, Franklin County, Canal Winchester, Gahanna, Hilliard, New Albany, Upper Arlington, Westerville, Worthington

What are the requirements for the online workshop?

You can see all restrictions and eligibility requirements here, but this is the short and sweet version.

  • You must pass an online quiz after watching a slide show presentation before you can access PayPal and order your rain barrel.
  • You must have joined the GreenSpot program (
  • All homeowners, residing in their homes throughout Franklin County, are eligible to participate in the online program.

What if I have additional questions not answered here?

Please refer to the EarthMinded™ RainStation™ website FAQ page for information on the following: Installation, Use and Maintenance, and Trouble Shooting.

Other questions can be answered by Franklin Soil and Water staff by calling or emailing us below:

Still Have A Question?
Ask Us!

Eligibility & Restrictions


In-Person Workshops

Home owners who live in a participating community are eligible to attend an in-person workshop where they participate in a rain barrel and stormwater presentation and take the rain barrel home with them. The communities participating in 2014 are unincorporated Franklin County (townships outside of municipalities), Canal Winchester, Columbus, Gahanna, Hilliard, New Albany, Upper Arlington, Westerville and Worthington.


All homeowners, residing in their homes in Franklin County, are eligible to participate in the online program. Homeowners watch a slideshow and take a brief quiz. After passing the quiz on these topics, the homeowner can order a rain barrel via PayPal. The barrel is then picked up at the Franklin Soil and Water office at 1404 Goodale Blvd. Suite 100, Columbus 43212 from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. from Monday through Friday. One day a month, the office will also be open Saturday morning for pick-up. Dates and times will be emailed to clients.


Because the GreenSpot Rain Barrel Program is primarily focused on stormwater education, not simply selling rain barrels, homeowners who have participated in the program in the past are not eligible to purchase another rain barrel. There are several local retailers selling the same or similar rain barrels.


Rain Barrel Workshops 2013