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If you collect rainwater you will need to setup your rainwater barrel(s) properly to make it easy to fill up watering cans to water your plants.

Having your rainwater barrel sitting directly on the ground won’t be convenient for two reasons:

  1. You’ll need to bend down far to open and close the tap at the bottom of the barrel.
  2. It’ll be hard to place a watering can underneath to fill it up.

The solution is to elevate your rain barrels high enough to allow you to place a watering can underneath. As you can see  in my greenhouse this is very convenient!

Watering can under water barrel
Safety note: a rainwater barrel weighs a lot once it is full with water. Use a sturdy support such as a frame of 2x4s with a sheet of thick plywood or deck boards on top as you can see above.

For my four interlinked barrels I had an old concrete slab that I used in addition to some concrete blocks.

Another reason that I have to elevate these barrels is due to the bottom piping that links the barrels together. This lets me empty all the barrels from just one outlet where the hose is connected to.

Linked water barrels

A final safety note: be sure to strap the barrels in so that they don’t topple if jolted (either by someone or during an earthquake). Here is a photo again in my greenhouse showing a metal band (highlighted in red) that is secured to the greenhouse framing.

Greenhouse water barrel

 

Bonus tip: It also helps to add a short hose to the tap so that you can more accurately direct the rainwater into your watering cans. A great way to repurpose a garden hose that you had to discard because it leaked. Just cut it to length at the hose bib end.

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Marc Thoma Signature

Marc Thoma

Tranquil Garden Urban Homestead, Victoria, BC

Marc Thoma

Marc is the founder of Tranquil Garden Urban Homestead. He has more than 15 years gardening experience and is working steadily on creating his own urban homestead, trying to be more self-sufficient by growing most of his own vegetables and fruit.

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