Rainwater harvesting for landscape plantings

Twenty-nine days in February meant extra time to gather information for awesome future posts. What this also means is last month was great too. You’ll soon understand why as you read on.

Four articles were published and all were well received on Twitter and Facebook. A few of them even spawned international publication on sites like Reuters and Marketwire. The best of them so far is an article titled “Confessions of a Watewater Operator” published by WaterDeeply which gained attention from a few large national water associations across the USA.

To get things started, our first post was about pollution that comes with Valentine’s Day. It might surprise you, it’s about condoms.

Every Holiday Has Its Own Pollution – Valentine’s Day Edition

Condoms floating in wastewater.

This topic has become ever more important – the fact to not flushing condoms – as SFUSD has decided to distribute condoms to middle schoolers. As mentioned on the blog and quoted around the net, education is key and the best place to start is where they are being used.

Our Valentines Day pollution prevention article found interest from a firm called Fluksaqua, they wrote a press-release titled “Valentines Biohazard: Embrace the Love but Don’t Flush The Glove This V-Day” that was syndicated internationally about a preventable “Condom Tsunami.

Hubert Colas – President of the America’s at Fluksaqua also profiled me and we discussed trash in the sewer, aging infrastructure and resource recovery. FluksAqua runs a forum for water and wastewater professionals to discuss industry related topics – even if you’re not in the industry but want to learn more, the forum could be worth your time. 🙂

Build a Better Rainbarrel

Given the El Nino rains – or lack there of in February – brought forth the ability to show off an easy to build water storage system that uses inexpensive recycling bins and electrical conduit parts. The advantages are the system is modular and easy to take apart, plus a watering pail can be quickly filled for watering the plants. A built in passive overflow made sure that over-night rains wouldn’t flood out the bins.

A completely DIY solution that anyone can put together.

Capturing Rainwater for Landscape Plantings

You may notice a common theme here – rain, rainbarrel, rainwater harvesting. This article is very similar to our bioswale we built last summer, but now the water is being directed underground to garden beds and not to the street. “Capturing Rainwater for Landscape Plantings” is about installing gate valves in our underground rain gutter drainage systems to direct the water into something like a reverse french drain. This way, water can be delivered directly to the roots of plants and not sent directly to the street.

This system requires a little more active participation, but the long run effects are better for your garden.

DIY: Flush the crud from your hot water heater

You’ll never believe what collects in the bottom of your hot water tank! A quick Do It Yourself article with some home maintenance flare – “DIY: Flush the crud from your hot water heater” shows you how you can safely clear the sediment out of your hot water heater, extend its service life and improve energy efficiency in your home.

The photo with the white chunks is what came out of mine and it is on a semi-annually maintenance schedule. The entire process took about an hour. Water heats up faster, is hotter and less natural gas is used. In case you are wondering, the recycled water portion of the post is where the drained tank water goes onto your landscaping, instead of down the drain.

Twitter – Stats – @RecycledH20

  • Top Tweet –

And a very close runner-up…

Facebook – Stats – fb.com/RecycledH2O

  • Top Post –

If you’ll be using a condom this Valentine’s Day, put it in the trash when you’re done. Whatever you do, don’t flush it…

Posted by RecycledH2O on Thursday, February 11, 2016


Until next time.