This shed was being dismantled at a mill near where I live. I had to ask what they were going to do with it…and that’s how I ended up getting this 900 sq ft (83 sq. mtr) building. The cinder blocks in the foreground provide a bridge during the rainy season mid-October til late May.
We love to garden but with our shallow well we knew we had to be careful with the water and not over plant In the winter we would watch all the rain fill the creek and wash into the ocean…in the summer we had to be frugal. Since this shed had a metal roof I started thinking about catching some of that rain water to keep for the summer. I wanted an above ground tank so I could gravity feed…no need for a pump. I found a used 3000 gal tank that was in good shape and set it up on the gravel bed.
After getting one tank I figured it was such a great idea, i bought a second tank knowing the price would never be lower. I extended the gutter down pipe to reach. This photo was taken about 9 years ago when I started using them.
Watershed to tank via hijacked gutter.
It helped to have the kind of downspout that is circular so I could adjust to any angle.
Every year we clean the gutter first and then let the first few rainfalls drain to the ground, rinsing the roof of pine needles, bird poop, and leaves. The sieve catches any small debris that might have made it down this far…keeping it out of the tank. It also holds the pipe in place, as nothing is glued. I need to be able to adjust to the second tank.
Only 5 days of rainfall, this tank is full. I’ve got to hook up the second tank.
Our annual rainfall is 60 inches (1500 millimeters) which we receive between mid October til late May. In the summer sometimes there’s no rain for 3 months. That’s when we need more water for the blueberries, fruit trees, and artichokes. We tap into this water, but we have to remember to shut it off. We can easily lose 1800 gallons overnight!
This water is used ONLY for irrigating the garden, not for drinking water which would have to be filtered.
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