Plant a rain garden, install a rain barrel or add native plants to your landscape, and you can receive up to a 50-percent refund through a Contain the Rain program in Johnson County, KS.

To encourage property owners to use best practices for stormwater management, Johnson County Stormwater Management Program offers the refunds to homeowners and businesses that make improvements on their properties.

Installing sustainable landscape solutions, like native trees and plants or rain barrels, helps “contain the rain” where it falls, which reduces the amount of stormwater going into storm drains. Water from rain and melting snow that enters storm drains will eventually find its way to streams, rivers and lakes carrying all the pollutants it picked up along the way. This water is not treated before reaching these waterways, which causes water pollution, flooding and land erosion.

Native plants and trees have deep root systems that allow the water to be better absorbed and also filter pollutants from the water before it reaches waterways. Installing rain gardens or rain barrels help capture rain where it lands, and reduces the property owner’s need for using tap water for watering.

Participating cities include: Gardner, Fairway, Leawood, Lenexa, Merriam, Mission, Mission Hills, Olathe, Overland Park, Prairie Village, Roeland Park, Shawnee, Westwood and Westwood Hills. Each city in Johnson County administers its own program. Visit Contain the Rain to see garden templates and program requirements.