Rain Maker….

…..bring us some rain.  I made a discovery earlier this week….for a mere $40 I would learn how to make a rain barrel with the barrel and conversion hardware supplied.  This is a class provided by the Hampton Master Gardeners and the City of Hampton several times each spring.   I signed myself up and off to  Bluebird Gap Farm I went.  They had a short class prior to barrel making on water conservation and recycling.  Afterwards we went outside and proceeded to make our rain barrels…..

My 55 gallon olive barrel from Spain with conversion hardware.  The holes are pre-drilled prior to our arrival.  Using nuts, washers and caulk, the faucet is installed at the bottom of the barrel.  You can attach a hose to this or use it to fill watering cans…..

You should have been there….imagine  all the barrels laying flat on the ground….grown people, lying on the ground ~ half in and half out of their barrels.  Quite a site to see indeed.  I was so tempted to take a photo when I looked around and saw this but I thought maybe I better not….some people may not have been amused if I did.  So here we have the finished product……

The connector is an added bonus ~ in case I want to get a second barrel.  The top is fully screened to prevent mosquitoes from infesting the water and to filter the debris from the downspout.  Tomorrow I will prepare the area and cut the downspout so the barrel will fit beneath it ….and then sit and wait for the rains to come.  🙂 

Did you know that one inch of rain on a 2,000 square foot roof yields 1,200 gallons of water?  That would fill my rain barrel up almost 22 times.  An example given during the class indicated that two 55 gallon barrels were filled after 1/5 inch of rainfall.  When you think of that, it is amazing the amount of water that comes off the roof and is washed away.  Granted I can’t cook or bathe in this water…..but I can use it to water my plants, fill my birdbath and my fountain or wash my car.  

The barrels are incredibly easy to make.  You do want to be sure you use a barrel that stored food grade items…..especially if you are planning to water a vegetable garden.  Olive and pickle barrels are commonly used.  I have priced 55 gallon rain barrels….the cheapest I found was around $140.  I spent a little time and effort and got mine for $40…not bad, not bad at all.  On top of that…..I got to visit a little farm in the middle of the city, Bluebird Gap Farm.  A couple of photos to give you a look see…..

By the way, Shadowhouse Creations Rugged Vintage Tone Texture has been applied to the last three images.  Jerry has so many beautiful textures available….and he offers them to you for free.  Stop in and say hello.



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2 Responses to Rain Maker….

  1. Gina says:

    Well done on tackling such a hands on project! Here in Australia every new house by law has to install a Water tank. Ours is 10,000 litres and we had it buried under the front garden when they were digging out the foundations. It is such a great feeling to water the garden in the height of summer with water that fell on our roof over the previous few weeks. Ours automatically fills the toilets too. A great concept until you have a power cut!!!

    • Magikal Folk says:

      I think something like this should be required as well Gina. I was floored when I heard the numbers as to how much water could be accumulated….and to think what could be used for that water that is simply running down the drains.