Before spring arrived this year I had a bad feeling this season would be the season for drought. We had a ridiculously mild winter and now, our rainy month of April, where the ground is usually saturated with the spring thaw and fresh rain fall, is proving to be a dud.
In recognition of this, and the fact that every time our dog runs in the back yard he is kicking up big clouds of dirt, I thought it would be a good time to post about water conservation.
In one of my previous posts, I commented on how you should save your water when you make hard boiled eggs and give the water to your plants because there is extra nutrients in the water that leeches out of the egg shells. Another tip is when you are washing the dishes, keep a bin in your sink to give your dishes a quick rinse. Any food particles can go right in the water. Take the bin and carry it out to your garden or compost pile (if it isn’t too far) and water your plants or your compost with your pre-wash sink water. The food particles will serve as a compost tea of sorts for your plants or you will be adding a very necessary ingredient to your compost pile in a dry spell – water.
If you are into gardening at all, you have probably heard of rain barrels before… and how ridiculously expensive they can be. If you are new to this, rain barrels are just that – barrels that catch the rain fall so you can water your plants with it as needed. They come in all shapes and sizes, with spouts, without spouts, etc. If it also pretty easy to make your own, and cheaper! I found a good tutorial on Pinterest about how to make a rain barrel out of a garbage can HERE.
Just a couple things to keep in mind if you do decide to create your own rain barrel:
1. Make sure you have a lid that snaps on securely so if you have any little ones running around, they do not get curious and fall in (HUGE CAUTION ALERT HERE!!!!!!)
2. Make sure you have a lid because mosquitoes lay their eggs in stagnant water and unless you want to raise a swarm of mosquitoes, keep that rain barrel covered!
If you are really, REALLY dedicated, I have hear of people in the Permaculture world who hook their “gray water” system (laundry, shower, sink water) from their homes up to a drain that pours out into a pond in their backyard. The idea is to wash some clothes or take a shower and then watch the water flow into your little pond in the backyard where you can raise ducks, water loving plant-life, AND water your garden.
That is a little too involved for me but it works for some people! I have seen people growing mini jungles in the middle of the desert with that system set-up.
I read a great book about Permaculture called Gaia’s Garden by Toby Hemanway if you are interested in finding out more about the Permaculture world.
In the meantime, keep those little seedling plants watered! Especially if you have anything planted in a container.
Until next time!