Rainwater harvesting is becoming more and more popular as the world’s green thumb becomes bigger. It’s a very responsible way to help out the environment that won’t put a huge dent in your wallet. Over the long term, harvesting rainwater can provide a little more savings on your water bill. Watering your garden and lawn is the most common use for harvesting your rainwater. However, here are a few other ideas you could use to maximize your use of harvested rainwater.
If you live out in the western part of the country (United States), you might be pretty used to having a drought and the tough times it can potentially bring. A few inches of rain is difficult to come by and water rates are sky rocketing. Harvesting water during the rainy seasons can really give you a helping hand here. The common rain barrel for residential use can hold up to 55 gallons of water. There are some that can hold a lot more than that, too. Figuring out a system of how you’ll use what you’ve harvested can make a huge difference during times of drought. Just make sure you keep your rainwater filtered (by using a screen) and away from sunlight so it’s not prone to growing algae or parasites.
Set Up Drip Irrigation
This is how you can get really fancy with your gardening. Many plants can benefit well from being on a schedule where they are constantly fed the water that they need. Drop irrigation can also be pretty beneficial in times of drought and during times of really cold winters. The downside is setting up the costs of such a system. However, the upsides of a “set it and forget it” type method can really have its payoffs, especially if it’s good for your plants or garden!
Fill The Swimming Pool
Hot and rainy summers can really send the levels of your pool water back and forth. If you’ve harvested enough rainwater, bringing your pool back to a desired level won’t be hard. This is a nice plus because it takes a lot of water to fill a pool. Any help you can get is welcome. The downside is that your harvested rainwater isn’t always clean because of roof contaminants or animal droppings. Your plants love this kind of water but it’s not really that great for your pool off the bat. You definitely want to make sure you shock your pool with some chlorine if you use this method.
Wash Your Car Or Driveway
This is a pretty untraditional method for using your harvested rainwater. However, I read about people doing this all the time. It’s free water and it makes a lot of sense to use it during seasons where rain is more likely. A lot of the rain barrels come with pre-attached spigots that you can run a hose from. The water pressure will work just fine with all the water wanting to rush out of the bottom of the barrel.
Again, rain barrels aren’t expensive and they can be a nice addition to your garden. If you use them right, you appreciation for them will certain blossom. Go green and help the environment!
Allison Kingsley loves all things gardening & home improvement who also writes about the benefits of rainwater collection systems. Going green is in! Follow her on Twitter (@DomesticAllison) for DIY home and interior design tips!