Tuesday, June 1, 2010

A Necessary Item in Every Garden


It rained a wee bit last night.  Not a hard rain that we could really use after two weeks of lovely hot temperatures. In the sandbox two weeks without rain can make the difference between plants that are flourishing and doing well and those that are beginning to show stress.  The soil here is sandy, although we are constantly amending it with compost and triple mix. Sandy soil drains like a sieve. It holds no moisture or nutrients for the most part.  Most plants after getting established here survive quite nicely.  We do not grow anything that needs to be babied along.  That means very few roses or pretties as I call them.  Good stout, serviceable and drought tolerant is the way to go.

The reason for my rant today is to introduce two necessary items in my garden.  They being the water barrels that occupy space, one in the back and one in the front of the house.  In summer if it is hot and dry over a period of time we are subject to water bans.  That means no unnecessary watering allowed. Grass, gardens, car washing are no nos.  The water barrels come in handy then.  Of course it matters that we had some rain to fill them prior to the dry spell.  There is always a but to every argument isn't there?

The blue water barrel was scavenged by my dear husband from somewhere and fitted with a tap at the bottom and a piece of hose to fill the watering cans.  I have a few of these too.


The second one was kindly offered to me last summer by Fiskars to try out. They have a gizmo on the downspout to divert over flow to the ground and has a cooler shape than the blue one.  I tried two of them and unfortunately they both cracked and drained all the water collected.  Fiskers readily replaced them.  The third try Fiskars gave me a newly designed one.  I am happy to report that it is holding water perfectly so far.

So, in summary I have to give a thumbs up to my water barrels as a necessary part of this garden landscape.  A bonus is nice soft rain water and not hard clorined town water for my babies.   Happy Gardening. Valerie

7 comments:

Marydon Ford said...

How creative a rain barrel(s). We bought oak wine barrels & last year the pump broke ... Mr. Dept911 is supposed to fix them this year. I love them ...

Have a great week.
TTFN ~ Hugs, Marydon

fairegarden said...

I agree completely, Valerie, rainbarrels are a necessity, even where rainfall is high. Periods without rain occur no matter where we are gardening and having that stash is perfect for the containers at all times. We worry about cracking during winter, never emptying the barrel like we were supposed to, so far so good but we need to follow the instructions this year. :-)
Frances

A Garden of Threads said...

Hi Val, My rainbarrel sits out front behind a large blue spruce. Watering cans at the ready, but you are right, rain needs to fall to fill that barrel. Please some rain. Take care. Jen

Ann said...

Thinking about getting rain barrels for a while, I must just stop putting it on the long finger and just go out and get them, and where I come from we get plenty of rain.

Kimberly said...

Yes, rainbarrels are necessary in the garden! I love mine!

Pondside said...

We have drought here in the summer - hard to believe in June, when rain falls every day. The Island is just a big rock, and the water rolls off the heavy, stony soil, so water barrels are a good idea here too. I hope your hot spell has passed - maybe send a little warmth out this way!

Country Girl said...

What a clever idea, Valerie. We used to vacation in Ocracoke, NC where water is at a premium. Cisterns are located under many of the houses and downspouts direct the rainwater into them. This is the water we used for dishes, showers, washing the clothes. The drinking water came from jugs brought in.