Wednesday, March 06, 2013

methods of conserving water: a gardening season primer

I'll never forget my first lesson in conserving water. I was at summer camp, and our head counselor stood in front of the group and explained how we could use less water when brushing our teeth by turning off the water when not using it. As an adult who has been doing this practice most my life, it seems so elementary as to require no explanation, but I remember feeling astonished at this news as a child. Oh, right, I don't need to run the water when I'm not using it!

I make attempts where I can to teach my children to be environmental stewards by modeling the behavior I hope they will adopt someday in their own homes. Now that we are almost back to gardening season, I am sharing a few of the ways I try to conserve water:

I plug up the sink instead of running the water while I hand-wash dishes. When I'm washing my hands, I catch the water in a basin or bucket and use the greywater later to rinse off the porch or water the yard.

Here's an interesting blog post about saving water when canning. The author saves the water when she's going to can over several days or uses it to "water" her compost, which helps it break down faster. You can avoid wasting as much water by not buying a canner in the first place and using a stock pot instead, but I was late getting that memo.

Rainwater Harvesting
Wikipedia has an educational article on rainwater harvesting. I got a catchment barrel on Freecycle that I'm excited to use, but I am waiting to use it until we have time and money to alter the gutters. I learned recently that the catchment water can't be used in a vegetable garden because the water that touched the roof is contaminated with chemicals from the shingles.

I love the idea of planting a garden and other beds to catch rainwater. Our goal someday is to have no lawn to speak of that we have to water and maintain. Living in a semi-urban town in Massachusetts means there are many parks within walking distance where we can run and play in grass. If you're interested but don't know where to start, there's an inspirational rainwater harvesting evangelist out there named Brad Lancaster, and NPR did an informative interview with him a few years back.

How to you conserve water at home? In what ways do you teach your children to be environmental stewards?

Author's Note: This post is part of The Homestead Barn HopSeasonal Celebration Wednesday, and LHITS DIY Linky.


Rebecca Watkins said...

A great post and a subject close to my heart. There are some excellent ways to integrate greywater systems like the system used in those tire houses in Taos. Thank you for sharing your post with us and I hope to welcome you over at Seasonal Celebration again today! Rebecca @Natural Mothers Network x

Taylor-Made Ranch said...

I too have a rain barrel that my hubby fashioned for us from a food-grade 55-gallon barrel. He outfitted it with a spigot & a hand pump and I use it to water all my porch potted plants. We also have water from another downspout running underground to a deep concrete cistern that we pump for use in our veggie garden. There is no city water going for irrigation here. <3 it! I posted about it recently - I'll place the link below in case you want to see how we did it. (visiting from Homestead Hop)

Rain barrel post:

~Taylor-Made Ranch~
Wolfe City, Texas

sarah saad said...

شركة تنظيف خزانات بجدة الجوهرة من افضل شركات تنظيف الخزانات بجدة حيث ان تنظيف خزانات بجدة يحتاج الى مهارة فى كيفية غسيل وتنظيف الخزانات الكبيرة والصغيرة بجدة على ايدى متخصصين فى تنظيف الخزانات بجدة
شركة تنظيف خزانات بجدة
اهم شركات كشف تسربات المياه بالدمام كذلك معرض اهم شركة مكافحة حشرات بالدمام والخبر والجبيل والخبر والاحساء والقطيف كذكل شركة تنظيف خزانات بجدة وتنظيف بجدة ومكافحة الحشرات بالخبر وكشف تسربات المياه بالجبيل والقطيف والخبر والدمام
شركة مكافحة حشرات بالدمام
شركة كشف تسربات المياه بالدمام

sarah saad said...

اهم شركات نقل العفش والاثاث بالدمام والخبر والجبيل اولقطيف والاحساء والرياض وجدة ومكة المدينة المنورة والخرج والطائف وخميس مشيط وبجدة افضل شركة نقل عفش بجدة نعرضها مجموعة الفا لنقل العفش بمكة والخرج والقصيم والطائف وتبوك وخميس مشيط ونجران وجيزان وبريدة والمدينة المنورة وينبع افضل شركات نقل الاثاث بالجبيل والطائف وخميس مشيط وبريدة وعنيزو وابها ونجران المدينة وينبع تبوك والقصيم الخرج حفر الباطن والظهران
شركة نقل عفش بجدة
شركة نقل عفش بالمدينة المنورة
شركة نقل عفش بالرياض
شركة نقل عفش بالدمام
شركة نقل عفش بالطائف
شركة نقل عفش بمكة


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