April showers may be known to bring May flowers, but with a rain barrel it may usher in more than just flowers!
Municipal water often has chemicals such as fluoride and chlorine added to it. When applied to lawns and gardens, these chemicals could harm plants or decrease their yield, and could also reduce the activity of beneficial bacteria in the soil.
Initially used in times of drought and as an alternate free water source, rain barrels use soft, chlorine-free, luke-warm water to soak lawns and gardens. Rain water reduces the shock and damping-off of any transplants, doesn't leave water spots when used for rinsing outdoor objects, and leaves your lawn or garden greener. Better yet, it reduces the energy used by municipalities to treat and pump potable water and sewage, reduces storm run-off into local water ways, and helps direct water away from the house's foundation. You can either purchase a rain barrel or make one yourself, as shown on this site. If you'd rather purchase one, here is a link for a site in Ottawa. If you live outside of Ottawa, shop around for one in your area.
In addition to helping conserve one of Mother Nature's most precious resources, a rain barrel will usher in savings on your water bill. Now that's enough savings to go buy more flowers with...happy collecting!
Posted by Myschka