Best rainwater catchers for wet weather gardening

Make the most of your outdoor living space in rainy weather with these stylish garden accessories.

Rain on pebbles - rainwater catcher

by Angela Kenny |
Updated on

The UK weather can be turbulent; one day it's sunshine and the next day rain; you never know what to prepare for. Rainy day gardening doesn't have to be such a chore, though. If you have the right garden accessories, work efficiently and with the weather in mind, you can take your garden up a notch. In this article, we round up the best rainwater catchers and water butts for rainy day gardening.

Best rainwater catchers shortlist:

Best disguisable water butt: Garantia Linus 2in1 Water Tank 220L
Best luxury rain barrel: Madison Rain Barrel with Fountain in Millstone, 185L
Best rainy day watering can: Chantepleure Watering Can
Best aesthetic rain catcher: Cascading Rain Catcher
Best unique rain catcher: Watering Can Rain Chain

What rainy day products do I need?

Although it can make your soil and grass fairly soggy, rain can actually be really efficient for us as gardeners. Using extra gardening products can help to collect water sustainably.

The first thing you need to buy to make your gardening more efficient through the summer is a water butt, also known as a 'rain barrel'.

What is a water butt, you ask? These tanks usually hold water runoff, typically through rooftops and pipes. You'll generally see them looking like big grey or green bins.

Luckily, nowadays, you can get lots of different kinds of water butts and cans that don't have to look like an eyesore or stand out in your garden for catching rainwater.

women filling watering can with water butt - rainwater catcher
©Getty Images

What other products should I be using?

If you're not looking at installing a water butt into your garden, we've also picked out the best rain catchers, watering cans to collect rainwater in, and rain gauges.

From a terracotta watering can to a unique copper rain gauge, you can keep an eye on your garden whilst also keeping an eye on the rain.

Here is our breakdown of the best rainy day garden products such as water butts, watering cans, and rain gauges you can get now.

The best rainwater catchers for a modern garden

Best disguisable water butt

garantia linus water tank 220Garantia

Holding over 220 litres, the Garantia Linus 2in1 Water Tank will look right at home in a modern garden. Disguised as a tall plant pot, guests will never know that it's a water butt.

Pop your favourite plant in the top planter cup, which is removable to make planting as easy as possible, while also allowing for the inside of the tank to be cleaned regularly.


  • Looks great
  • Modern


  • Made of plastic

Best luxury rain barrel

Holding up to 185 litres, the luxury Madison Rain Barrel with Fountain in Millstone collects rainwater and then also acts as a water feature. Spurting out water with its integrated water fountain, just add pebbles.

This isn't too tall, standing at only 83cm, so it won't take up too much room in your garden. It has an easily accessible hose to fill a water can or empty the barrel. A great addition to any modern garden.


  • Available in two colours
  • Able to withstand extreme weather conditions


  • None

Best rainy day watering can

A medieval ancestor of the modern watering can, this Chantepleure Watering Can was used by gardeners of the time to carry collected rainwater. Made out of terracotta, this beautiful watering can is a great statement piece for any garden.

Fill with water and seal the upper opening with your finger. Remove your finger and water will delicately spray out via the sprinkler in the base.


  • Unique


  • Can be fiddly

Best aesthetic rain catcher

If you're looking for an aesthetic rain catcher, this Cascading Rain Catcher is a unique rain collector. These pretty rain cups fill up and gently chime when they knock against one, making sounds depending on how full of water they are.

Coming in three different sizes, these rain catchers can hold from 10-15 cups of water.


  • Great addition to your garden and each one is unique
  • Three different sizes


  • None

Best unique rain catcher

Another statement piece to collect water and inspired by rain chains from Japan, this is a simple water feature with a difference. The Watering Can Rain Chain also makes sounds with the bell at the bottom of the chain.

Hang from a pergola or guttering where the raindrops can fall into the top watering can and then cascade all the way down. When the water reaches the bottom, the little bell will ring. It’s made from metal with an aged finish.

Customer review: "A good weight makes it hang and move well."


  • A good weight
  • Relaxing


  • Prone to rust

Best unique water barrel

Don't like the basic rain barrels you can buy? Check out this unique water butt. Not only does this Rain Barrel Row in Olive Green look super-stylish, but it will also collect 130L of soft rainwater that your plants will love.

Practical and stylish, this is perfect for any modern garden looking to be sustainable and eco-friendly. The barrel itself has been made sustainably in the Netherlands so it's perfect for any green gardener.


  • Easy to install
  • Eco-friendly


  • None

Best rainy day water pool

corden steel reflective water
Price: £74.95 to £1,689

A beautiful and distinctive piece for collecting water, this steel water bowl collects water with ease. Let the rain fill up this Corten Steel Reflective Water Pool then sit back, relax and enjoy the light and depth it adds to your garden.

Made from 3mm Corten Steel, the high quality provides durability and sustainability. Starting from £74.95 for a 60cm pool, these water pools go up to prices of £1,689, if you're looking at larger bowls.

Customer review: "It looks perfect and will improve in looks as it weathers."


  • Soothing
  • Will last for years and years


  • Takes time to weather

Best rainy day rain gauge

orwell copper rain gaugenotonthehighstreet

Looking for a modern and durable rain gauge? This Orwell Rain Gauge in copper is perfect to keep an eye on the rainfall in your garden whilst fitting in with garden style.

All you need to do is pop it into a space in your garden and the rain will fall through the defined aperture into the inner plastic measure. You will need to measure this once a day to keep an eye on the rainfall.

Customer review: "A lovely present for my husband who was extremely pleased with it. Great instructions for a learner and record sheets. The copper casing really sets this Rain Gauge in another level."


  • High quality
  • Original


  • None


What are the benefits of water butts?

These big barrels have a lot of advantages if you're considering investing in one for your modern garden.

1. Saving water: some large water butts can collect around 550 litres of water, but the average is around 200 litres. Instead of using taps or hoses, these water butts will collect all the water from the natural rain you need to keep your garden moist.

2. Saving money: The barrel of collected water won’t come from your water system; as it’s fresh, it will save you money if your water is metered.

3. Easy to install: You don’t need anything complex to install a water butt; if necessary, you may need an extra diverter, but they are easy and cheap to find.

What to read next:

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