Click below to listen to my GardenBite radio show: Rain barrels and compost bins
April Showers bring May flowers. At least that’s the hope and that moisture isn’t in the solid form of snow!
EEK! I’m really hopeful that will NOT be this year! I think the 2013/14 winter season was brutal enough. In fact, climatologists are saying this MAY be a drier/hotter season. We’ll see…
In the meantime, rain barrels are always a good idea for several reasons. Rainwater is the best kind of water for your lawn and flower gardens and capturing it is a good thing for several reasons. First, it’s free! It’s also a good storm water management practice. Corralling that precious water before it rushes down the storm drain and carries with it phosphorous that is a major contributor to unwanted algae growth in our lakes and ponds.
The University of Minnesota Extension Rain Barrels – a way of collecting and using rain water.
I’ll be picking up my Rain Barrel from the Cannon River Watershed Partnership next week. They offer the barrels and a quick class. Where I live, my City offers a $20 rebate off my utility bill for verification of installation of a Rain Barrel. Not a bad idea!
All Minnesota Counties have an online presence now. Albeit some better than others. Nonetheless, here is a LIST of counties. Check with them, your Master Gardeners and/or your City to find out what may be available to you. Of course you can always just buy one or build one and place it. Here are just a few ideas from TreeHugger.
One more thing, a rain barrel can save most homeowners 1300 gallons of water in one season! Another good idea are compost bins. They can be nearly any structure that can hold debris while allowing for air circulation, water and heat (as in some sunlight) to get to the pile.
The above compost is made from a garbage can and can be bungeed to a dolly for portability.