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Permaculture: Rainwater Harvesting Online Course

Turn water scarcity into water abundance!

This course teaches you how to conceptualize, design, and implement sustainable water-harvesting systems for your home, landscape, and community.

What Are The Benefits Of Rainwater Collection?

Rainwater is an amazing free resource. It's more beneficial to plants than municipally supplied water and it can help:

  • Reduce stormwater runoff
  • Recharge aquifers
  • Stop groundwater depletion

Harvesting rainwater can also help you become more self reliant with water and lower your carbon footprint.

Learn Rainwater Harvesting

The goal of this water catchment course is for you to create an integrated, multi-functional water harvesting plan specific to your site and needs.

  • Define key rainwater harvesting concepts, terms and principles
  • Assess a site for rainwater harvesting potential and water uses
  • Make strategic decisions about what features and systems to use for a site
  • Design a conceptual integrated rainwater harvesting plan for a site
  • Refine a conceptual rainwater harvesting plan with relevant systems details

Rainwater Course Structure

WEEK 1 RAINWATER HARVESTING PRINCIPLES: You will share stories of people and sites that are using rainwater harvesting to enhance their lives and communities.

WEEK 2 SITE ASSESSMENT: You will discover how to analyze the rainwater resources in your climate and on your site, as well as the water requirements that you need to plan for.

WEEK 3 WATER COLLECTION STRATEGY: You will decide what features and systems to use and the reasons behind making the best choices for your site.

WEEK 4 RAINWATER HARVESTING DESIGNS: You will integrate your rainwater harvesting strategies into a wider plan that also considers the sun, plants, soils and more.

WEEK 5 TECHNICAL SYSTEMS DETAILS: You will refine the conceptual plan you are developing to bring you closer to installing the plan on your site.

Learning Formats

You will assess your on-site rainwater resources and learn to apply a diversity of strategies to maximize their potential. This expert-led course features:

  • Video lectures
  • Exercises
  • Assignments
  • Custom made spreadsheets and templates

The course also features the work of Arizona rainwater harvesting author Brad Lancaster. Brad’s best-selling-award-winning book Rainwater Harvesting for Drylands and Beyond Volume 1 is the textbook for the course. Brad is also the featured lecturer, alongside Andrew Millison, the course's developer.

Self paced: On demand. Access any time. Available starting May 1, 2020.
Practicum: Nov. 2 - Dec. 6, 2020
price (2)
Self paced: $195
Practicum: $295

Additional Permaculture Trainings

Advanced Permaculture Design for Climate Resilience

May 4 - Jun. 7, 2020

Permaculture Food Forests

Self paced: On demand. Access any time. Available starting March 30, 2020
Practicum: Sept. 28 - Nov.1, 2020


Andrew Millison
Permaculture Design Certificate

Andrew Millison has been studying, designing, building, and teaching about Permaculture systems since 1996 and is an instructor in the Department of Horticulture at Oregon State University. He instructs Advanced Permaculture Courses in Teaching, and has guest instructed for many Permaculture courses throughout the Western US.

Jamie Wallace

Jamie Wallace has worked primarily in the Vancouver area in British Columbia, Canada. He specializes in permaculture landscape design for urban, acreage and commercial properties; installation and project management services; rainwater harvesting design and installation; and plant propagation.

Brad Lancaster

Brad Lancaster is the author of the award-winning "Rainwater Harvesting for Drylands and Beyond" and co-founder of DesertHarvesters.org. Since 1993 Brad has run a successful permaculture education, design, and consultation business focused on integrated regenerative approaches to landscape design, planning, and living.

Past Students' Work

Take a look at some recent projects our students have created.