What are we talking about today?

Some days have themes. I don't necessarily post something in each of these topic areas every week.

Sunday: Church-related or spiritual things.
Monday: Running.
Tuesday: Books.
Wednesday: Transportation.
Friday: Green living.

11 May 2012

Raindrops Keep Falling

Today, dear readers, we return to the Green Friday series I know you've all been missing since March. And today's subject: Rain barrels.


I talked quite some time ago about greywater: We use captured shower water to flush our toilet, and dish rinse water for the plants. Since 1) we live in an apartment and 2) greywater systems are prohibitively expensive, that's about all we can do. The problem I have is this: We either have too much greywater or not enough at any given time. So, I'm thinking of getting a rain barrel, or something rain-barrel-esque, to hang onto the greywater until we need it to water the plants.

I don't need one that's this
tall. But if you live in a rainy
place, this may be the size for
you. Source.
I know for sure that all the water will be used eventually, because we have thirsty plants (tomatoes!) and hot weather. But I'm not wild about bowls of pasta cooking water hanging out on my kitchen counter until I can give it to the carrots. I'm looking for something that will hold more water than the bucket in my shower, but won't take up tons of space on my porch. And I'd rather not buy a new one, so I already have an eye on Freecycle and Craigslist.

I do like the looks
of this upcycled
rain barrel from
If you're a homeowner, by the way, I can't recommend a rain barrel enough. You can capture actual rain in it if you have land for it to stand on, and unlike my greywater, rain from the sky is free. Also on the topic of recycling water: A friend on Facebook recently shared that she's put her washing machine drainage hose outside to water her plants. I do recommend that if you try that (and if you can, do-- it's a great idea and you've already paid for that water anyway! Why let it go to waste?), you either put down some gravel or some filtering plants to grab some of the leftover soap, especially if you use detergent with phosphates.

Do you have a rain barrel or similar arrangement? Do you like it? What should I do for a barrel?


Carole Anne Carr said...

There are many plastic large water barrels that can be bought here, not very attractive but very efficient.

Doreen McGettigan said...

Great inspiration! I am embarrassed to say I am probably the worst 'green' person in the country. I am going to work on that:)

erica and christy said...

My dad got super into this stuff a few years ago. And has the rain barrels in his garage to prove it. (I voiced the fact that he had shingles on his roof and the rain hit that before the gutters - and we never found another solution...)

Also, my in-laws had their washing machine hose out to the corn field until the county came by and ticketed them - yes, it's illegal here. So, well, check your ordinances before going green, I guess?? Then find out why they exist and find a new solution!

Grahame said...