For awhile now, I have really been trying to encourage people to collect rainwater. It’s one of the main ways to make our households and communities more resilient to drought-flood extremes, and to self-insure against water shortages (including shutoffs due to contamination etc.).
My home setup is extremely simple, just a few barrels lined up under the roof line. (When the rain stops, I cover the barrels to keep out mosquitoes, and to protect lizards and other yard-babies from falling into the water and drowning).
The latest addition to my setup is several 40-gallon tubs, which can serve as a nice cool tub to take a dip, and then the rainwater can be dumped out to water the trees & shrubs. Each tub can fit a couple of small kids or one mediumish-sized adult. 40 gallons is about 150 liters. The other morning after we’d had a big rain that filled the tubs to the brim, I put my bathing-suit on and climbed into one of the tubs, soaked in the cool water immersed up to my neck for 10 minutes or so. It was lovely!
If you have kids, the rainwater tubs can be mini swimming pools and also an opportunity to teach math skills!! Kids who like water will quickly learn exactly how much rainfall equates to a full tub! OK, I confess – I’m like a kid in this way!! I get super enthusiastic watching the tubs fill, or trying to gauge how full the tubs willbe when I get home, if I’m out somewhere and it starts raining.
I also have one very large tub, a 110-gal, which can serve as a small swimming-pool for kids or a soaking tub for two adults!
To see photos, visit the post on my Deep Green Facebook page.
One of my favorite rainwater collection resources is this rainwater catchment calculator from Innovative Water Solutions. Super simple and handy for homeschooling/unschooling lessons, and for your own calculations. The calculator is very versatile. It says “enter the total annual rainfall for your area,” but you can also just as easily enter the total from just one storm, one month, etc. And where it says “enter your roof area,” you can also enter the roof area of, for example, a shed or gazebo you are thinking of building. Lots of opportunities not only to contemplate your next investment in preparedness, but also to come up with a variety of math exercises for the kids!
• Rainwater Harvesting Guide for Beginners (blog post by Rob Greenfield, Nov 1, 2021). Contrary to widespread misconceptions, rainwater collection is not difficult, illegal, or expensive. And it’s a great thing to do whether you live in a dry climate or a rainy climate. And preventing mosquitoes is easy. (I keep trying to tell everyone all of these things, but if any of you are still not convinced, Rob’s article will be a great help to you!)
• I’ve made several posts about rainwater collection here on this blog; you can find them by searching “rainwater” in this blog’s search field. Happy Harvesting! Enjoy helping to restore the natural water cycle while obtaining lovely free fresh water from the sky.