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Topic: any rain barrel advice?  (Read 1347 times)
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heart_bats
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« on: January 24, 2006 10:50:07 AM »

This spring I would like to make a rain barrel to reuse roof runoff and cut down on water use.  Has anyone done this?  This website looks pretty good, but it would be great to get some Craftster input.

http://www.marc.org/water/build.htm
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Inna
« Reply #1 on: January 24, 2006 11:08:29 AM »

that website sounds about right - we didn't screen ours and had tonnes of mosquitoes - so we put goldfish in - worked like a dream until the cat got the goldfish
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« Reply #2 on: January 24, 2006 11:16:17 AM »

I had a very primative rain barrel a couple of years ago. The landlord wouldn't fix a corner where the cutter was broken and rain would pour into my garden, disrupting all my new plantings. Argh! I put a large trash can under the downpour and, voila!, free water for the garden! I'd just dip my watering can down into the barrel to retrieve. However, I'd recommend doing what the website says for a spigot. I also second Inna's suggestion to have a mosquito control method. There are natural mosquito killers for water features available at gardening centers, or you can check out gardeners.com.
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« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2006 12:56:01 PM »

Depending on where you live... If it's a fairly-rainy climate... you might consider skipping the upper faucet & connecting two containers at the upper end by means of a short length of ordinary hosing.

One place we lived, hub set up a 2-container arrangement like that at almost every drainpipe...
Except, the containers were those purchased freestanding barrels...
And, in two different places where the drainpipes emptied directly onto an entryway sidewalk (?!? ok is that insanely-stupid design or what??), hub re-configured the drainpipes into sort of an arch that went over-above the sidewalks then down into the rainbarrels.  Made those areas quite pretty with small/lightweight vines growing up the barrels & on/around the drainpipe arches.

I think those rainbarrels came with solid tops but hub left the barrels open & covered them tightly with some sort of very fine mesh screening.  Just-in-case, he also used those mosquito tablets in the water; iirc, they're actually intended for outdoor fish ponds & are supposed to be fishsafe/ birdsafe.
However, if young kids frequent your yard, again just-in-case, you might actually want a solid cover on your rain containers.
« Last Edit: January 28, 2006 12:59:03 PM by Ayn » THIS ROCKS   Logged
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« Reply #4 on: March 06, 2006 07:28:27 PM »

To keep mosquito's from laying eggs in your rainbarrel, add a few drops of canolla oil. It forms a slick layer on top of the water and the eggs may hatch, but they can't breath and die. We do this with our dugouts, here in the backwoods, and it works great! Also, when you water your plants, it keeps them nice and shiny and repels dust and other wind blown build up(I live on the bald prarie, it's windy) good luck, d Smiley
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« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2006 08:01:17 PM »

if  you are looking for fancy  try what eh web site said  if inexpensive is teh way   to go for you.....   try  getting some 5- 10 gallon buckets. depending on the size of your yard.  ( I use old laundry soap buckets or from local donut shop the buckets they get there icing in)  set  several in different  places in teh yard.  misquito repelent a  must.  U we pour the water in  one of the  lawn and garden pump spray thingys ( used for weed killer or bug spray normally)  and  easily spray teh garden  by the time it empties I am to teh next bucket to use to fill it back up.  BUT  USE  CAUTION  FOR  CHILDREN!!!!  these buckets are very tempting to little ones!  my 48 year old hubby has a hard time staying out of them  LOL. 
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« Reply #6 on: May 01, 2006 11:16:13 AM »

heart_bats did you make your rain barrel?  I went to a workshop this weekend and made one very similar to the barrel on the website you listed.  We used a 1 1/4" nylon hose barb and a 1 1/4" drainage hose (like from your clothes washer into the drain or for a sump pump) for the top overflow hose instead of a faucet and garden hose.  The instructor recommended the drainage hose because it is larger than a garden hose, so it drains out the overflow faster.  I think it also costs less and is easier to use when you want to connect a couple rainbarrels together.

On mosquitos, I have heard that the larvae need 10 days to mature.  If you use the water in the barrel every 8-9 days or so, that should break the mosquito's life cycle.

Are you local to the website you listed (Kansas City)?  If you are, maybe we can have a rainbarrel making party sometime.
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