Burger Landscapes

specializing in native plant landscapes, xeriscaping, and rain gardens

   Feb 23

Rain Water Harvesting

What is Rain water Harvesting?

Rain Water Harvesting is the collection of rain water off the roof of a house, building, patio, etc. and collected in Rain barrels or in a underground storage basin.

Why should I consider Rain water Harvesting?

Collecting rain water can drastically reduce flooding in those flood prone areas, by collecting rainwater each and every one of us can cut down on the amount of water that flows into sewer systerm’s saving you money by reducing your water bill, including your city storm sewer charges. Collecting rain water can also alleviate demand on municipal water supply systems, and can help you avoid strict water schedules and watering restictions.

What can you use the collected water for?

You can use the water to add a nice water feature like a bubbling urn or a water garden to your yard. You can also add a pump to hook up a garden hose to water flower beds and even hook it to a professionally installed irrigation system. You can also use the water to wash cars, decks patios.

If you’re in an area where wildfires happen, you can install a rainwater harvesting system to collect water and use it to protect your property if a wildfire breaks out. Some Insurance companies may have discounts for insurance if you have a system to protect your property against a wildfire.

Rainwater Harvesting has become much more than just putting a rain barrel under your downspout and collecting a few gallons of rainwater. Burger Landscapes goes further in collecting rainwater by installing an underground basin that can hold much larger amounts of rainwater then the typical rain barrel. If your a developer starting a new subdivision, and need to put in a water collection pond, that takes up valuable space, we can install one of our modular systems that can fit just about anywhere and the space you save you can use for other uses, because our system is underground, where no bugs can get to such as Mosquitoes.

Where can we reduce?

Using alternative water sources, such as rainwater can make an impact on the challenges we face with supply and demand.

Current Solutions
Rain Gardens – check out our Rain Garden Page for more info.
Rain Barrels – Check out our Rain Barrel Page for more info.
Here are some reasons and facts on why we need to conserve and collect rainwater for use:
The American drinking water infrastructure spans more than 700,000 miles, that is more than four times the national highway system making water easily accessible by turning on the faucet.

The United States water infrastructure
Is over a century old
Is undersized
Requires extensive updating

An EPA study estimates that updating the United States’ aging water and waste-water infrastructure could cost between $750 billion – $1 trillion dollars over the next two decades.
The cost of repairs far exceeds the capabilities of local utilities, who have not charged enough for water over the years to fund the improvements on this scale.
This creates an alarming situation where the required improvements ultimately rely on the people to fund in the form of increased water rates and new taxes. Unfortunately this isn’t the only problem.
There are two major issues surrounding fresh water that we need to focus on now because of the rate at which they are occurring
Supply & Demand
Storm water Runoff
An example of our demand exceeding our supply:
The Ogallala Aquifer is the largest fresh water reserve in North America
in 1930 it was 70′ below ground level
In 2008 it is now 110′ below ground level
That’s a 40′ drop in only 75 years!! It may sound like a long time but it is nothing from a geological time frame. We are simply removing it faster than it gets replenished.

Where can we reduce?

The water we use outdoors does not need to be of drinking water quality, yet we now use it outdoors and don’t give a second thought about it.

According to the EPA, the average American family of four uses about 400 gallons of water per day.
Indoors: 280 gallons
Outdoors: 120 gallons
Water used for flushing toilets and washing laundry account for nearly half the American family’s indoor water use. According to the American Water Works Association, These devices also truly don’t require drinking water.
Current Solutions: Rain Barrels
Rain barrels are a simple modern-day solution to supply and demand issues.

Pros
Inexpensive
easy to hook-up
Can be fitted to most applications
a great step towards water conservation.

Cons
Hard to hide… often considered ugly
Small water capacity (on average 55gal.) limits use
gravity flow provides water through spigot at slow rate limits used to filling watering cans and short garden hoses.

Large Tanks and Cisterns
The small size limitation of a rain barrel could be addressed by using larger tanks and cisterns.

Pros
Large volumes of water can be stored
pump systems can be implemented to provide pressurized water.

Cons
Hard to hide, takes up valuable property space
expensive and inefficient to ship… paying to ship a lot of air!!!
requires heavy equipment for installation

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