A rainwater collection system is a great way to reduce costs associated with keeping your lawn and garden green. Rainwater collection isn’t a complicated concept; it’s exactly what it sounds like: collecting rainwater to use later.
Many rainwater collection barrels sold today are made to be mounted against an exterior wall of your home. That means the water will be landing on your roof first and then trickling into the barrel. Most roofing materials are safe for contact with water that will be used for outdoor watering chores. However, if you’ve got a vegetable or herb garden in the mix, plan to water it from another source, because some roofing materials like asphalt shingles can leach toxins that shouldn’t come in contact with food.
Gutters, piping and downspouts will carry water to your collection barrel. Gutters that are kept clean and in good repair will help you get the most out of every rainfall. But be aware of your gutters’ construction. Gutters with soldered seams are typically older and may leach lead.
For best results, get a container made especially for rainwater collection. These are usually made of toxin-free resin, concrete, or fiberglass, and have thick walls that can hold up to temperature changes and inhibit algae growth.
Most storage tanks come equipped with a spigot, to which you can easily rig up a hose or garden soaker for watering.
So go ahead! Harvest your own rainwater for an endless supply for a lush lawn and garden.