The recent rains have been welcome, and the drought is officially over for all South Carolina counties according to the S.C. Drought Response Committee. But, South Carolina has experienced drought conditions during eight of the last ten years. Oftentimes, a month’s rainfall can happen in one summer storm. In these scenarios, and in times of encouraged water restrictions, having a rainwater harvesting system has many benefits – environmental, financial and horticultural. A 1,000-square-foot roof catches more than 600 gallons of water from just one inch of rainfall. This water can be used to irrigate lawns and gardens, water plants and wash cars. Rain barrels are good for the environment because they reduce stormwater flow, which causes erosion and can carry pollutants from yards and streets into streams.

A rainwater harvesting workshop will be held at the McCormick County Library on Saturday, June 8th starting at 2pm. This workshop is designed to teach homeowners about water conservation, water wise gardening, and rainwater harvesting. A build-your-own rain barrel demonstration will be included and the finished barrel will be given away to one lucky participant. The workshop is free and all are welcome to attend. This program is sponsored by the McCormick Soil and Water Conservation District.

The workshop will be presented by Terasa Young, a Natural Resources Clemson Extension Agent and Carolina Clear coordinator. Carolina Clear is a comprehensive approach developed by Clemson University to inform and educate communities about water quality, water quantity and the cumulative effects of stormwater. Carolina Clear addresses the special significance of South Carolina’s water resources and the role they play in the state’s economy, environmental health, and overall quality of life.