Rainbarrels

Nicky

Member
Does anyone here have rain barrels? After the amount of rain we've been getting this year, I thought of buying a few and attaching soaker hoses to the bottom. Seems like it would be a good way to keep the lawn watered during the times we don't get a lot of rain.
 
What a great idea Nicky. My mom has a rain barrel that she uses all summer long to water flowers in the yard. I had never thought about the soaker hoses though. Let us know how that works.
 

Jason

Charlie Mops wannabe
Staff member
I've got about 6 for collecting rain and another 6 or so turned into strawberry planters. If I could find a cheap source for more I would get some.
 

BrewJen

Member
No, we don't have a rain barrel. I would like to get one eventually but they are expensive and so we just haven't done it yet.
 

corked

Member
Can't you use most anything as a rain barrel? I don't see the point of buying a specialized rain barrel if you're only going to use the water for watering the lawn or garden.
 

melli

Member
We have rain barrels (two of them). We use them to water the garden. It is a great way to keep the veggies wet and we don't have to waste the water. We have always had rain barrels.
 

Jason

Charlie Mops wannabe
Staff member
Can't you use most anything as a rain barrel? I don't see the point of buying a specialized rain barrel if you're only going to use the water for watering the lawn or garden.
I see people using lots of different things from buckets to trash cans. However you really do not want to be using something that has had harsh chemicals in it. It can add poisons to your yard. Last time I picked up rain barrels was for about $8 for a 55 gallon plastic drum. Before that the county used to give them out at seminars a few times a year for free if you registered early enough.
 

clarkdart

Active Member
We are about ready to start this. I am pretty sure with the rain we have had in the past two months I could keep the entire yard set for a good 4 months. The kids found out about the idea at school and want to find a fun way to make them blend into our yard's theme.
 

wild

Moderator
We've been wanting to get a rain barrel but all the ones I find are upwards to $100 or better and are all plastic. Plastic lasts about 2 years here in the sun.
 

Jason

Charlie Mops wannabe
Staff member
We've been wanting to get a rain barrel but all the ones I find are upwards to $100 or better and are all plastic. Plastic lasts about 2 years here in the sun.
Do you have any food places near you? I know some people near a pepsi or coke plant and get the 55 gallon drums that the syrup comes in. The ones I got had a lot of salt in them, took about three washing's. Not sure what exactly was carried in them as the people barely spoke English. I have heard of people going to the car washes and using them but they have had chemicals in them and I do not want to add more chemicals to my lawn/plants.
 

wild

Moderator
Yes we have both Coke & Pepsi in the Valley and I even have a few LME barrels from my LHBS but I was hoping to get something that can withstand the desert sun for more than two years.
 

Jason

Charlie Mops wannabe
Staff member
Yes we have both Coke & Pepsi in the Valley and I even have a few LME barrels from my LHBS but I was hoping to get something that can withstand the desert sun for more than two years.
That is interesting. They last in our Florida sun for many years. But I also paint mine so I'm wondering if that helps.
One thing I would like to try, and not sure if it is in your budget as it is out of mine. Is to buy the big 250+ gallon jugs. I think if you bury them and create a sort of cistern and then use a pump with maybe one of those cheap solar panels to power the pump. This would allow you store lots of water and use it pretty well and keep it out of the sun.
 

wild

Moderator
That is interesting. They last in our Florida sun for many years. But I also paint mine so I'm wondering if that helps.
Ping! That didn't even come to mind. I bet the kids could paint the LME jugs to look like barrels.

One thing I would like to try, and not sure if it is in your budget as it is out of mine. Is to buy the big 250+ gallon jugs. I think if you bury them and create a sort of cistern and then use a pump with maybe one of those cheap solar panels to power the pump. This would allow you store lots of water and use it pretty well and keep it out of the sun.
Another great idea. We're planning to put paving stones for the back patio so I don't know if it would be possible to do that and retain structural integrity.
 

masksis

New Member
I mother has one and I have wanted one ever since I saw it. She also has the soaker hoses that you were talking about I think. It really is a great idea and a wonderful way to reuse resources.
 

BrewJen

Member
Can't you use most anything as a rain barrel? I don't see the point of buying a specialized rain barrel if you're only going to use the water for watering the lawn or garden.
It depends. At one time, we used essentially a large wooden planter to store rain water. Unfortunately it became a mosquito breeding ground more than anything else. I want something closed.

Truth be told, though, since we moved beachside, we don't water the scrubby grass, so I'm not sure we really need a rain barrel anyway.
 

masksis

New Member
I agree with BrewJen. A closed rain barrel is going to be your best friend. Mosquitoes like to lay their babies in any standing water, so I could imagine the type of disaster that would be. You would be eaten alive every time you go outside.
 

wild

Moderator
You can kill mosquito larva with just a little bleach but it shouldn't be used if critters are drinking from it. If critters can get to the water, use vegetable oil or apple cider vinegar.
 
I don't have a rain barrel, but then again we don't usually have drought issues where I live too. I don't water my lawn on a regular basis and my garden is small enough that I can just spray it down with the hose quickly.
 
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