Rain Barrel Raised Bed Setup

Rain Barrel Raised Bed Setup

Elevated beds appeal to gardeners for a variety of reasons, including well-draining soil that retains water better than conventional garden beds. Soil that maintains water will even retain nutrients that are vital to plants. Adding a rain barrel into your own raised bed setup will even increase your plants’ health, since rainwater is free of chlorine and other additives that could harm plants. It’s also great for your back since you may transport it to your own raised beds by means of a low volume pump or using gravity.

Raise the Height of the Barrel

Among the most important things to consider when having a rain barrel with a raised bed, is that the base of the barrel has to be higher compared to the bed to get the water to flow out into the bed. Elevate a barrel by building a stand from concrete blocks or pressure treated lumber. Whichever material you use, make certain it can hold the weight of this rain plus that of this container. Calculate the weight of a complete barrel by multiplying the pounds of 1 gallon of water (8.35 pounds) with the ability of the barrel, then insert the weight of the barrel. For instance, say a plastic 55-gallon barrel weighs 10 lbs. Find the total weight: 8.35 multiplied by 55 and 10 equals approximately 470 pounds total weight. Add a 10 percent margin to ensure the stand is sturdy enough. Your stand would need to hold about 520 lbs.

Transporting the Water

You are able to move the water into your own raised bed by filling a watering can also carrying it by hand, or even attach a hose to the spigot. Just keep the hose lower compared to the base of the barrel when you water your plants. Otherwise the water won’t feed out. To get a no-hands approach to shake your raised bed, consider creating a drip irrigation system from PVC pipe. You can leave it in the bed and attach it into the rain barrel having a regular garden hose. Turn it around and walk away while it waters your raised bed to get you. Automate the system with a low-pressure timer connected to the spigot and you wo not even need to be present when watering time comes around.

Increasing Water Pressure

You can increase the water pressure in your rain barrel using a ball valve type spigot in lieu of a silcock. A ball valve includes a greater rate of circulation than a silcock spigot. You can also increase circulation by raising the height of the barrel. On average a rain barrel 1.5 feet off the ground produces 1 gallon of water each minute; lift it to 2 feet and it goes as many as 2 gallons per minute and will increase as you continue to boost the height of the barrel.

Capturing the Water

When using a rain barrel in a garden setting, obtaining the water into the barrel can be tricky especially if your raised bed is a space in any buildings. 1 way to collect rain water is to use an implement that resembles a giant funnel connected to the top of the barrel. It captures rain and directs it into the barrel. Another installment is to lengthen the downspout out of your home or garage out to your barrel.

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