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Environmental Issues
And
Going Green

By Alan J Hartley

Recycling Water In The Garden

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The most important subject for re-cycling, in the garden, with global warming and the drier Summers with their water shortages, is re-using waste water. Bath water is always included in this topic as it can be drained off with a hose to water the garden but there are several other less obvious ways of re-using water from the house. All sorts of washing water ie; when the plates are washed, can be used in the garden. However it is not a good idea to use dirty washing water on vegetables as it might make them taste. The soapy water will not prove a problem with other plants though, in fact, if it is splashed over them it will kill some aphids and other pests. Often when you turn on the hot tap to wash, it is usually a few seconds before it runs hot enough to use. Normally this water just runs down the sink, but there is no reason why the bowl canít be put under the tap to save it to pour into your watering can.

I am sure that in the olden days every country cottage used to have a rainwater tub at the corner of the house to collect the water from the gutters. Nowadays this plentiful supply of clean free water just goes down the drain, but many different types of downspout diverters can be bought and fitted onto almost any house which will divert the rain into a large water tub. In long dry spells you will probably use all of the water in your tub, but we often have dry spells followed by a Summer storm which I know this year have frequently filled my mothers two large tubs in about 15 minutes of rain and they are 25 gallons each. (We have 5 tubs in all including one on the greenhouse) If you do fit a diverter to a water tub you must make sure that there is an overflow on the tub back down into the drain so that when the tub is full the water does not flood everywhere. Not only will water tubs give you water in the garden when there is a dry spell with a hosepipe ban, but with most people going onto water metres they may save you money in the long run.

 

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Alan J Hartley