Green Spot

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I qualify for a rebate?

Franklin County, Ohio residents can receive a rebate after taking our short online backyard conservation quiz or attending an in-person class. Purchases must meet eligibility requirements, and we must receive a valid receipt and photo of installation. Where you live determines what you qualify for. Each individual municipality decides what rebates their residents are eligible for and how many rebates are available each year. We have no control over it. When a city, municipality or village has combined boundaries, the primary tax district takes precedence. 

What you are eligible for based on your home's tax district: 

What items are eligible for a rebate?

Eligibility for rebates are dependent on your home's tax district and your eligible rebate items will be listed on your voucher. If the item is listed on your voucher, fits the specifications listed below for each item, and is purchased from a licensed retailer, it will be approved for reimbursement.  

1. Rain Barrels: Any enclosed rain barrel with a diverter system installed (purchased separately or as part of unit) will be considered for reimbursement. Find out what a diverter system is through Earth Minded. We will NOT reimburse any models with a cut downspout or an open lid. 

 2. Compost Bins*: Only compost bins that are a "closed bin", pre-fabricated units meant for outdoor use will be reimbursed. This will typically include tumblers and on-ground units. Vermicomposting indoor units will now also be approved. Reimbursements will not be applied to DIY homemade bins, bokashi, kitchen compost bins, or home-composting services such as Compost Columbus. If your unit does not come with a bottom, you can purchase one separately or can rodent proof it yourself. Click here to find out how to rodent proof your compost bin and tips on how to keep rodents out. If you purchase the SWACO compost bin, it is an automatic rebate because the bin meets all the requirements! 

  • *City of Columbus Residents - you are only eligible for the discounted SWACO compost bin. Quantity is limited and subject to availability. City of Columbus residents are NOT ELIGIBLE for a $50 Compost Bin Rebate on a Tumbler, On-the-Ground Bin, or a Worm Bin. 

3. Native Plants & Trees: Native perennials (plants that go dormant at the end of the growing season, but grow back every year), shrubs, grasses, and trees are highly recommended and preferred and will always be reimbursed. We will NOT reimburse any cultivar or variety of an invasive plant species (such as Purple Loosestrife, Japanese Barberry, and Butterfly Bush), annuals, vegetables, herbs, aquatics or seeds. Click here for our non-native, Invasive Species, Do-Not-Plant list for purchases we will NOT reimburse. See our Resource Guide for more information on native plants. 


Where can I purchase eligible rebate items?

There are two different ways to receive a rebate on an eligible item:

  1. Receive an immediate discount from a local participating retailer. 
  2. Or purchase an approved item from a licensed online or larger retailer and submit for reimbursement. 

To help get you started, visit our retailer guide which lists our participating local retailers and some of last years go-to larger retailers that sell eligible items. You are not required to purchase an item from a local participating retailer. You may purchase an eligible item from any licensed, legitimate retailer of your choosing as long as it fits the criteria for an eligible item and the receipt is itemized. 

We cannot reimburse you for DIY project costs, items purchased from craiglist, items listed on a hand written receipt or exchanged privately between two parties. Only items purchased from a legitimate retailer with receipts that contain retailers name, location, date, receipt number, name of items and purchase amount will be accepted. 

Is there a list of approved native plants and trees?

Short Answer: All plant purchases will be approved as long as it's not: an annual, vegetable, herb, aquatic plant, or seed purchase, and most importantly, is NOT listed on our DO-NOT-PLANT Non-Native, Invasive Species List!

Long Answer: There are so many species and cultivars of native plants, shrubs, and trees at local nurseries. Because of this, it's hard to create a list of all the approved plant species. We strongly encourage participants to only plant Ohio native plants, shrubs, and trees for their amazing root systems and ecological benefits to native pollinators and wildlife. However, many non-native plants, including some garden favorites, aren't invasive. As long as your purchase is not listed on our Non-Native, Invasive Species List (aka DO-NOT-PLANT list!), or an annual, vegetable, herb, aquatic, or seed, AND is planted in the ground, your purchase can be reimbursed.

Many local nurseries carry native perennials, grasses, shrubs and trees. Some nurseries specialize in native plants. All you have to do is ask! Unfortunately, we do not have any control over the type of plants nurseries carry, so make sure to double check your purchase is not listed on our Non-Native, Invasive Species List (aka DO-NOT-PLANT list) before you buy!

Can I submit a reimbursement for an item I purchased in a previous year?

No, we cannot reimburse you for items purchased prior to the current year of participation. All Items must be purchased within the same calendar year of participation. No exceptions.