Workshop aims to catch the rain

Published 10:59 pm Monday, October 31, 2011

The Alabama Cooperative Extension System will join the Alabama Clean Partnership to host a “Make and Take Rain Barrel Workshop” from 10 a.m. until noon on Nov. 15 at the Pike County Extension Office.

The cost of the workshop is $35.

Participants will learn about watersheds, nonpoint source pollution, the importance of water conservation, water harvesting and a brief introduction to rain gardens,” said Grant Lyons, Pike County Extension coordinator. “Each participant will construct and leave the workshop with a completed rain barrel.”

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

Lyons said there are several reasons for using rain barrels.

“Drought or no drought, we all need to conserve our water as both groundwater and freshwater supplies are limited,” he said. “Rain barrels help reduce runoff. For example, if a roof is 1,200-square-feet, then one inch of rainwater equals about 700 gallons of water. We can harvest this rainwater which otherwise would be lost to runoff.”

Runoff can cause erosion, carry fertilizers, pesticides and other chemicals.

“Rain barrel water is easily accessible and it saves money,” Lyons said. “Why pay utilities for water for your lawn and garden when you can collect rainwater for free?”

And, if those aren’t reasons enough to make a rain barrel, Lyons said an added incentive is that plants will love the rainwater.

“There are no added chemicals and rainwater is usually soft and free of dissolved minerals,” he said.

Space is limited for the “Make and Take Rain Barrel Workshop” so those who would like to participate are encouraged to register early by calling the Pike County Extension Office at 334-566-0985. Pre-payment and registration is required by Nov. 11.