I might have mentioned that I’d had this great idea to turn two black plastic refuse bins into temporary water-storage containers.
This morning’s first task was to empty them of rubbish and give them a good clean inside – which is when I discovered that both had holes in the bottom; not ideal for storing water!
Solution: as they are refuse bins, place black bin liners inside. Up spoke the voice of doom (Mr O) “That won’t work, they’re going to split because of the weight of the water”.
Of course they’re not. The bin liners are the same we used when putting rubbish in those bins – exactly the right size. AND, the water will flow slowly enough that the bags mould themselves to the shape of the bin (and seal the holes).
Second task: to use the last of the bricks from the stash under the kitchen window to build a plinth tall enough that the bins will be a similar level to the large water butt.
All those bricks have now gone – hurrah!!!!
Third task: To move the water. This involved placing a section of hosepipe inside the large water butt, waiting until the bubbles have stopped coming through, then placing my thumb over the hole and pulling the hosepipe out to place in one of the bins. Took as few attempts, but soon had it filling.
“That’s not going to work. I might have something in the shed to do that”. He didn’t!
Same again with the second bin. Another section of hose in the first bin, bubble/thumb/move – water flowing again.
Then the end of the first hose rose above the lowered level of the water in the large water but.
“I’ll cut the hose down, it’s too long and too stiff”. I don’t know what the neighbours thought we were up to!
Solution: Use cable ties to tie the end of the hose to an old broom handle, then wedge it in the large water barrel so the end stays under the water. Then start the whole hose underwater, wait for bubbles, stick thumb over hole, pull out quick and into bin.
Several attempts later – and much muttering from Mr O – and water was flowing again. As long as I don’t draw more than a couple of watering cans from it and expose the end of a hosepipe, the system should now work automatically.
And the benefit is that if we do have any rain in the foreseeable future, the main water butt that collects rain from my roof now has spare capacity and the water won’t overflow into the drains.
I used ducktape to stick the bin liners to the bins – just in a couple of places to stop them collapsing in on themselves.
And the newest water butt – waiting for me to find and buy some friends and make a proper stand (out of bricks) for it.
Now the brick stack is no more, I have reclaimed the original tiny patio. I just need to scrape off the moss and remove the weeds and alpine strawberry plants. I’ve made a start.