In the middle of July and early August, I begin to notice a change in my lawn and gardens. The temperatures were 104 – 107 F using my garden thermometer. I thought watering my landscape once a week would do the trick, but quickly found I needed more water to keep everything alive. To make matters worse, when it does rain, we get a ton of it at once and the part that doesn’t get absorbed by the soil, runs off down the street into the sewer. Then we don’t get rain for 3-4 weeks.
What if there was a way to collect all that run off water that typically goes down the sewer? Well, there is (otherwise I wouldn’t be writing this article). Water barrels or “rain barrels” are a great way to collect water for use later. My water bills are almost 200% higher in the summertime than during the rest of the year. This seems pretty normal for most people as they’re busy watering their lawns, trees, flowers, etc.
Water barrels can make a big impact. Most hold 55 gallons of rain that runs off from your roof. You’d be amazed at how quickly they fill up. If you have 2 or 3, you can see where they would make a big impact on your landscape as well as your pocketbook during the summer months.
Many come pre-made with all the equipment you need to get started. Think of this as an afternoon project on a Saturday. If you want to order a 55 gallon plastic barrel and make your own from scratch, then expect it to take a little longer.
For much of the country, water conservation is an after thought. But talk to anyone in California or Florida, and they’ll tell you a much different story. Water is at a premium. Many describe water in California as the next “gold rush”. Whoever controls the water, controls the economy.