Green Spot

Eligible Rebate Items & Requirements

Your rebate voucher will indicate your eligible rebate items based on your home's tax district and availability. Eligible items will vary by community! Please refer to your voucher to determine what you are eligible for. Reimbursements will ONLY be approved if you are eligible for these items based on your community AND if items meet the requirements listed below. Please note, you can only get ONE REBATE per household per year, but you can participate once every year. Each individual community decides what rebates their residents are eligible for and how much rebate funding is available each year. We unfortunately have no control over it. 

We are also OUT of rain garden rebates for Cities of Columbus, Westerville, and Franklin County Township residents. Check back in April 2024 for next year's program if you are still interested in a rain garden.

Rain Barrel Rebates

Completely enclosed rain barrels with an installed LEVEL diverter are accepted. We will not reimburse any rain barrels with a direct downspout to the rain barrel, any rain barrels with an open top, or rain barrels with an improperly installed diverter. For these reasons, we highly recommend the EarthMark/EarthMinded RainStation rain barrel. It includes the rain barrel and diverter kit as well as a winterization plug and detailed instructions. It comes in three colors - terra cotta, black, and gray. It is commonly available at local stores like City Folk's Farm Shop, big box stores, and online. 

Native Plant Rebates

Native perennials, shrubs, grasses, and trees are highly recommended and preferred. When in doubt, "Go Native!" We will NOT reimburse any cultivar or variety of an invasive plant species, annuals, vegetables, herbs, aquatics or seeds. 
  • For a list of invasive plants and plants to avoid, check out our Invasive, Do-Not-Plant List. It is updated every year. We will NOT reimburse any kind, varieties or any cultivars of items listed on our Invasive Species/Do-Not-Plant List. Take it with you when you do your shopping to make sure you're not purchasing any invasive plants or plants of concern. 

SWACO Compost Bin

Purchase the SWACO Compost Bin for only $30 from Franklin Soil and Water (cost $100 - $70 instant rebate = $30 cost to you plus tax). The SWACO bin is an on-the-ground bin, 82 gallon capacity, and is made from 100% recycled content. It is a single-unit main body with a harvest door, lid and rodent-proof bottom. You can purchase it online from Franklin Soil and Water after you have participated AND received your voucher! Please note, you will have to pick it up from Franklin Soil and Water's office in Grandview. We will send a reminder email one week before the pick up date. The bin fits in the back seat of a regular sedan for easy transport. YOU CANNOT PURCHASE UNTIL AFTER YOU HAVE RECEIVED YOUR VOUCHER! Quantity is limited and subject to availability. 

$50 Compost Bin Rebates*

*City of Columbus residents are NOT ELIGIBLE for the following $50 COMPOST BIN REBATE (including tumblers). The only compost bin rebate City of Columbus residents can receive is the discounted SWACO on-the-ground compost bin (see above). 

Only compost bins that are an "enclosed bin", pre-fabricated unit meant for outdoor use or vermi-composters/worm bins will be reimbursed if you are eligible for the $50 compost bin rebate. This will typically include tumblers, on-ground units and vermi-composters. Reimbursements will NOT be applied to indoor composting units like counter top compost pails, DIY/homemade bins, or home-composting services such as The Compost Exchange. All compost bins must be totally enclosed and therefore rodent-proof in order to receive reimbursement! 

  • Option 1 - Enclosed, On-the-Ground Compost Bin: We recommend the on-the-ground bin over the other options of compost bins. Sit directly on the ground and allow micro-organisms to enter and break things down for you! Most come with a lid, ventilation, and an access door to your finished compost. It must have a rodent-proof bottom in order to receive reimbursement. A picture of the rodent proofing is required for reimbursement! Some models do not come with a bottom from the store, so it might require an extra step and a little DIY to make it rodent-proof in order to receive reimbursement. However, these kinds of compost bins are the best option for making high quality compost. 
    • Hardware Cloth/Mess Wire Rodent-Proofing Option:
      • Construct out of ½” inch hardware cloth or welded wire
      • Cover vents with ¼” to ½” wire mesh
      • Use secure, tight-fitting lid
      • Prevent rats from burrowing under the compost. Suggestions:¼” to ½” wire mesh over a wooden pallet; dig out the soil and lay 3 to 4 inches of coarse gravel and ¼” to ½” galvanized hardware cloth; solid foundation of concrete or patio stones 
    • Gravel & Pavers Rodent-Proofing Option: 
      • Instead of mesh wire, you could put gravel or patio pavers under your compost bin to keep rodents out. This is very easy and a great way to upcycle leftover pavers or gravel. 
  • Option 2 - Tumblers: Great option for those who want a smaller bin and something easier to turn than an on-the-ground bin. Because they are often smaller, they might not be the optimal size compost bin of 1 cubic yard. However, under ideal conditions, they can make compost quickly. Price can vary greatly. Please be aware that the tumbling mechanisms are often made very poorly and tend to break easily. Tumblers are not as well ventilated as other kinds of bins, making them more prone to being too wet if you do not put enough "browns" in it. They are more prone to gnats.  
  • Option 3 - Vermicompost Bins: Great option if you don't have a yard. We recommend the Worm Factory 360 model which is available at City Folk's Farm ShopAmazon and more. Stackable trays allows for multiple batches to be going at once. Requires additional purchase of worms which are not eligible for reimbursement. Can't compost very much at a time compared to other bins. Worms can be somewhat picky about what they like to eat. Bin must stay around 55-80 degrees in order for the worms to survive. 

Rain Garden Rebates**

**Rain garden rebates are available for only certain communities and require extra steps than a regular Community Backyards rebate. 

You can receive a rebate of $250 for installing a rain garden! Eligibility for rain garden rebates requires that the property be located within a participating location, and the garden be completed the current year of application submittal. As of 2023, participating communities include: Cities of Columbus*, Gahanna, New Albany, Westerville*, Reynoldsburg*, Hilliard, Grove City, Upper Arlington, and the Village of Obetz. Franklin County's unincorporated townships* are also included: Townships of Blendon, Brown, Clinton, Franklin, Hamilton, Jackson, Jefferson, Madison, Mifflin, Norwich, Perry, Plain, Pleasant, Prairie, Sharon, Truro, and Washington. 

Rain garden rebate candidates must fill out an online application AND participate in Community Backyards via the online course or attend an in-person workshop prior to installation. As part of the application process, you are asked to work with Franklin Soil and Water Conservation District to help with sizing, location, and planting options. This assistance is available throughout the process of rain garden planning in a remote or onsite manner.

Receipts can be submitted after the rain garden is installed to receive the rebate. Items eligible for a rebate include: plants, mulch, compost, and drainage hardware for a rain garden on your property. Once the rain garden is properly documented, you should receive your reimbursement for the actual documented costs or $250.00, whichever is less. Due to extra requirements, immediate discount rebates are not available for rain garden rebates. 

Please note, we are OUT of rain garden rebates for Cities of Columbus, Reynoldsburg, Westerville, and Franklin County Township residents. Check back in April 2024 for next year's program if you are still interested in a rain garden.


Please refer to your voucher first. Contact Franklin Soil and Water if you have any questions via email at or call the office at 614-486-9613. The office is open Monday-Friday, 8:30am-4:30pm.