Sunday, May 6, 2012

Operation Rain Barrel

Pamphlet from Omaha Storm Water Program

That First Cut
Ali and Charlie removing the gutter

Aren't we cute!

Ready to install

Minor adjustments

We have always wanted a rain barrel here at Melia's Urban Farm, but didn't have the know how or the proper barrel.  We found many videos online with everyone's opinions of how to do it, cheaply or otherwise. Check them out, some are pretty funny!  It was one of those thing you put on the back burner.  Last year we almost bought a rain barrel at our local lumber store, but found it expensive and missing important components for filtering out sediment, maple tree helicopters, and the like.  We didn't want to go the trash can route, as we felt the plastic was too flimsy.  So, back on the burner.  I was either paying a utility bill, reading the paper, or just surfing the web, when I found out about the Omaha Storm Water Program.  You place an order for a free barrel on the site, and they email you with the location to pick it up. I immediately placed my order. Ours was at Under the Sink, an organization that disposes of the things that you should never dispose of yourself, paint, chemicals, cleaning supplies, etc, therefore not harming our very fragile environment. You take a copy of the email, or as Charlie did, drove there and told them "my wife has one on hold".  They looked me up and home he drove, proudly presenting me with our barrel!  I cannot say that the items we needed to complete the rain barrel were cheap, but we did call around for prices.  We spent $60 and that has mostly been covered by donations from my children for Mother's Day. As much watering as we do here at the farm, we will re-coop any costs with the savings on our water bill, not to mention the benefits to our planet.  Many states outlaw rain water collection, so I feel proud that Omaha is supporting this program.  Here is the final product. 
 It was nearly filled last night by a rainstorm that produced an inch of rain in one hour!  We are ready to rock!  For those of you that live nearby, here is the link or call 402-444-3908 and order your barrel.  Who knows, you may have some of the items on hand or know where to source them before you have to buy them.  Happy watering!