Garden plants need plenty of water to thrive, and rainfall in Iowa can sometimes leave us wanting more. During dry spells, we need to give our plants water beyond the rain Mother Nature decides to throw our way.
But you don’t have to break the bank – and the fresh water supply – to keep your plants sufficiently watered. Here’s how to water your plants without turning on a single faucet – and how to pull water out of thin air.
Catch the rain
Collect and store large amounts of rain water from your roof. Diverting rainfall into a rain barrel will not only keep the rain water from going down the storm sewer, but will provide you with a large supply of much needed water when times get dry. The folks at Rain Barrels Iowa in Des Moines repurpose large produce barrels to make sturdy, high quality rain barrels for your home.
Pet bowls and yesterday’s bottles
Do you see a glass that's half full? Use yesterday’s half-full water glasses and bottles to water your houseplants. And when Fido’s water dish needs refreshed, dump the old water onto your thirsty plants.
Out of thin air
Many Iowans keep a dehumidifier running in their basements when the humidity picks up. Instead of diverting the water into a drain, let the bucket fill up. Use the full bucket to water your plants. They will appreciate the drink.
Cook and rinse
When rinsing your garden produce, put a bucket or large dish under the faucet to catch the rinse water. Your plants won’t mind the dirty water. In fact, they’ll appreciate it. And when you boil or steam vegetables for the dinner table, don’t throw out that cooking water. Let it cool before tossing it on your plants, though.
Your plants will thank you for all of the water you divert from the drain for them.