This is the year to finally capture the free rain water from your roof to water your garden. It’s also the year to make free “black gold” compost from your kitchen scraps and yard waste. The WaterSmart Program through the North and South Rivers Watershed Association is selling rain barrels from the Great American Rain Barrel Company and composters from Earth Machine. They are on sale now online or can be ordered at the Gardening Green Expo on Saturday, April 1 at Kennedy’s Country Gardens. All orders must be in by Wednesday, April 12 and they will be available for pickup on Wednesday, April 19 from 3-6pm or thereafter, at the NSRWA office, 214 South Street, Norwell. In addition, NSRWA is offering a complimentary membership with purchase and donation proceeds go to NSRWA.
Rain barrels, which hold 60 gallons of water, are manufactured in the USA from a recycled shipping drum that will last virtually forever. Each barrel comes complete with overflow fittings, drain plug, screw on cover, and a threaded spigot with a choice of two ports to use with either a watering can or a garden hose. The rain barrel arrives with simple instructions for fast and easy installation. NSRWA is offering the Great American Rain Barrel in three colors; Forest Green, Earth Brown or Nantucket Gray at the low cost of $85.00 versus the retail price of $119.
“We moved our sale up this year so that people could get their rain barrels in time to capture the spring rains”, said Lori Wolfe, NSRWA Director of Marketing and WaterSmart Program Manager. “Lawn and garden watering take more water than people realize. When we have drought conditions and the streams are drying up, limiting outdoor watering and using water from a rain barrel can help conserve large amounts of water. To water a one acre lawn with just 1” of water consumes 26,000 gallons of water – or more than a standard 16’x32’ swimming pool! We want people to realize they can have beautiful, healthy yards using techniques that can actually save them time and money, and also save our precious water resources.”
According to Suzanne Gebelein of the Great American Rain Barrel Company, “Rain barrels can help homeowners manage rising water costs, save their vegetation from drought conditions and help communities protect their aquifers. Residents that use a rain barrel collect as much as 1,500 gallons in a season. This will save existing or new landscaping when a dry spell hits and supplement outdoor water usage, which spikes during the growing season. Rain barrels are also important to reduce runoff. Runoff from homes and developments can harm existing water sources because they flood storm drains and discharge pollutants. Rain barrels are chlorine free and an excellent source of water for plants and gardens.
“Barrels are easily connected to downspouts and fill quickly. In this region there is typically 16” of rain from May 1st – September 30th. For every inch of rainfall a 1,000 sq. ft. surface can collect 620 gallons of water, that means that an average roof of 2,400 sq. ft. could see more than 20,000 gallons of fresh rainwater splashing over its surface during that time period. That is a significant source of water that homeowners could be tapping into for free. Just keeping a small 10’ x 10’ garden irrigated during the summer months can mean using up to 1,700 gallons of water. Based on the average roof size, more than two 60 gallon rain barrels would fill for every 1/5” of rainfall. The Great American Rain Barrel Company recommends one barrel for every 100 sq. ft. garden. Multiple barrels are easily linked together for additional collection and storage.”
The Earth Machine composter is a cylinder, with a twist-locking, pest-resistant lid, and a locking harvest door, which makes accessing the compost very easy. Composters can save families up to 30% of their trash bills, by recycling kitchen waste – even paper towels and napkins. To learn more about the Earth Machine, visit www.earthmachine.com.
The rain barrels, which cost $85.00, and composters, which cost $70, must be pre-ordered by Wednesday, April 12.
To pre-order an Earth Machine composter, e-mail email@example.com or call 781-367-0626.