make your own rain barrels

everlastingMay 14, 2007

Perhaps this is a silly question... But I dont mind! :)

After looking at the cost of rain barrels, I was wondering if there is a less expensive way for the do-it-yourselfer?

What all would be needed? could you teach me, or do you know of some good links?

I dont mind if the barrel is ugly. I could make it pretty on the outside by growing some plants around it. Tall native grasses would be neat but wont work in my area (completely surrounded by trees in a small yound forest).So I guess this idea is out... Unless any of you know about plants that would be tall enough that grow in the shade.

Or, I could get some old barn wood when someone rips down a decaying barn and build that around it perhaps...

any ideas?


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I just thought.... Could I use one of those metal feeding watering troughs? big or small. that would be neat! and pretty (in my mind any ways.) and functional. But how to add plumbing to get the water out into a hose?

Or, to build a frame ouf of old wood and make it out of cement (?) and stone (?)= more pretty and functional as well! But again, how to do the plumbing?

:) I am so excited!

    Bookmark   May 14, 2007 at 11:46PM
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gardenlen(s/e qld aust)


can you access those 55us/gal, plastic drums the ones that have been used for food industry, they make good barrels leave the tops on (see pics of how we set ours up on our permacuture essay page), but investing (that's what it is) in a good sized rainwater tank is the ultimate way to go, as water is very precious.


Here is a link that might be useful: len's garden page

    Bookmark   May 15, 2007 at 2:29PM
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we don't have gutters on our house, but there are 3 areas where the water comes together from 2 roof slopes and really gushes off the roof. we have giant plastic trash cans under each area. i drilled a hole near the bottom of each one and inserted a spigot, sealed with plumbers goop. it works great. for mosquitos, we keep a few goldfish in each one.

    Bookmark   June 26, 2007 at 1:03PM
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muddyclogs(Zone 8, Pacific NW)

Hi Sammy-

I am building my own rain barrels this week, since I have some holiday time off from work. Here are some instructions I found online that I plan to use as my guide:

That link opens a PDF you can print that includes a list of materials you will need. I found a place in Portland where I can buy food-grade 55-gallon drums which is the perfect size for me. Good luck!

Here is a link that might be useful: Making Your Own Rain Barrel

    Bookmark   July 3, 2007 at 11:46AM
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