Got thirsty plants, but worried about your water bill?
Using rain barrels to harvest rain for watering your plants is a great alternative to using tap water. After the cost of the barrel itself, you are using a free resource to keep your gardens green through dry spells in the summer. Rain water is gentler on your plants and helps to reduce your water bill.
The Conservation Foundation sells rain barrels year round. The 55-gallon rain barrels are made of food-grade plastic and come in a variety of colors. You can buy a rain barrel online for $64.50 (plus tax). Home delivery is available for $18.50 more. They can also be purchased at The Conservation Foundation’s headquarters at McDonald Farm for $65 (includes tax). Rain barrels come with easy to install instructions and can be painted to add more color to your gardens. Order a rain barrel online at https://www.theconservationfoundation.org/rain-barrels/
Rain barrel placement is an important consideration. If possible, place the barrel next to a downspout that is close to your garden areas. The size of the roof draining to the downspout is also important. The larger the roof area, the more runoff down the spout. Place your rain barrel on a stand so that it’s easier to fill a watering can or provide pressure to a hose.
Cool Fact! These barrels have been up-cycled for a new life as a rain barrel after being used for storing things like olives. Up-cycling is even better than recycling as it repurposes an item in its current state.