Storing Rainwater in the Soil

Oct 12th, 2017 | By | Category: show tips
Photo courtesy, Betty Lambright.

Photo courtesy, Betty Lambright.

Betty Lambright is a pro when it comes to storing rainwater in the soil. She is an expert in water conserving design and rainwater harvesting. Her consulting business is As Right as Rain.

Things to consider when storing rainwater back into the soil:

  1. As a general rule, the amount of runoff from a 1” rain on 1000 square feet of roof yields 600 gallons of water. A 2000 square foot home in Austin will generate 1200 gallons from 1” of rain, and 38,400 gallons (32″ of rain) in an average year.
  2. Spend time observing how the runoff moves over the land before you decide to build a catchment area or rain garden for storing rainwater.
  3. Never impound water close to your house foundation or septic leach field.
  4. Always create an emergency overflow point when storing rainwater that is a few inches lower than adjacent structures.
  5. If possible, grow fruit trees or other water-hungry food crops with this free resource.
  6. Interplant with native species that can tolerate periods of wetness followed by drier conditions.
  7. Never use pesticides or herbicides in these areas. As you encourage water infiltration, the soil biology will become healthier and in turn support hardier plants.

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