Find a Water Saving Event Near You

The Water Coalition of Santa Cruz County sponsors a variety of workshops for Santa Cruz County residents. These workshops cover water-saving techniques and conservation principles to help preserve and protect our most valuable resource. For more information and to register for workshops, search on the calendar links below.


Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

Rehydrate the Earth: Small Scale Passive Rainwater Harvesting

April 2, 2016 @ 10:00 am - April 3, 2016 @ 6:00 pm



Please join us for a fun and practical Permaculture workshop designed to teach you easy, fun, do-it-yourself techniques to Rehydrate the Earthwithout storage tanks of any kind. Welcome water into your landscape and give it the fullest opportunity for involvement and productivity while it is there, bringing myriad additional benefits to the ecosystem. You will learn vital information and hands-on skills to direct and infiltrate rainwater into the soil, which can hold up to 30% of its volume in water! This workshop is focused on fairly level city lots, but the principles you will learn can be applied to varying slopes and very small lots, big rambling back yards or larger.

Water is a profound, sacred and mystical element that constitutes some 70% of our bodies and makes life possible on this planet. Let’s take care of it!!

Saturday begins with a morning presentation on Water and how it interacts with vegetation, soil and the earth at large. We will cover the magic and science behind the nature of water plus rain water harvesting principles and design considerations. In the afternoon we explore simple tools for finding contours on the land, expand our contour consciousness, and assess the site. Then we dive into the layout and implementation of human-scale earthworks with multiple functions including passive rainwater harvesting, reducing erosion and flooding, revitalizing soil ecology, supporting vegetation and creating wildlife habitat.

Sunday morning’s presentation is on greywater systems with an emphasis on small constructed greywater filtration wetlands designed to flow into passive rainwater harvesting earthworks. These integrated systems provide year-round soil storage recharge and ecosystem support at the ground level. Consistent moisture sustains a thriving soil ecology which in turn sustains trees and other perennials for diverse habitat production, microclimate moderation and incredible beauty. In the afternoon we will walk through a greywater site assessment and discuss the details of an integrated system. Finally we will complete the implementation of our earthworks including seeding, mulching and setting up a simple drip irrigation system to sustain our plantings through the first few summers until their roots reach the zone of saturated soil created by the earthworks.

Our site for the weekend is a beautiful property in the Midtown neighborhood. The yard is mostly flat with many existing trees and garden beds, and a chicken coop.

The course costs $95 for each day or $175 for the entire weekend and includes two delicious organic locally sourced lunches. Register now for one or both days.

For more information contact Lydia Neilsen at


April 2, 2016 @ 10:00 am
April 3, 2016 @ 6:00 pm


Lydia Neilsen


Midtown Santa Cruz
Santa Cruz,CA95060United States+ Google Map