I don't know when you were in Morocco and where -- the cities or the
boonies -- Arab country or Berber?
I just came back from a two-week trip based around the Four Imperial
Cities, plus some others. Long bus rides in between, broken by
numerous interesting stops.
Sorry to disappoint you, but I never saw anyone relieve themselves in
the streets. Although our tour stayed in pretty nice -- some very
nice -- hotels, even the little curio shops or restaurants/coffee
shops along the highways had clean restrooms, with soap and TP and all
the usual amenities.
I speak French, so interacted with local people freely. Nobody stank
from not bathing.
You certainly have a, shall we say, one-sided view of the country.
Any more exact details to back up your contentions? Time? Place?
Extent of contact?
Unfortunately, our tour only drove through the High Atlas, stopping en
route at little shops/cafes. What vistas! What jagged peaks and
steep valleys! Our excellent guide explained that the French put
through the first road over the High Atlas, for political reasons --
to be able to control the tough, independent Berbers. Designed
by French engineers, but built by local labor.
I would LOVE to go back with a car and a friend to wander around
the mountains; see more scenery; have more contact with the Berbers.
I have since done a lot of reading, notably "The Conquest of Morocco",
which told about the endless battles between the Arabs and the
Berbers, and between the French and everybody else, with the Germans
and British trying to get in on the act.
Sigh - so many places...so little time...not to mention $$.
I haven't been to Morocco but we do actual have indoor plumbing in
Australia, at least since grandpa fell down the pit and grandma couldn't
pull him out without getting the tractor.
But don't knock the thunder box, some people used to have two-holers or even
more seats. It allows for converstion and somebody to hand you the
catalogue the travelling salesman leaves when you cannot reach it. Did you
know that was the reason that people prefered matt paper and glossy printed
catalogues didn't really take off?
1000 gallons US is about 4000l. Say you have a modest vege garden, 20
square metres (22sq yards) which would provide quite a lot for a family,
such a tank will allow you put on 25mm (an inch) once a week for 8 weeks
which keeps your veges growing. Or you could water say 5 fruit trees for 16
weeks and keep them alive until it rains. In my original post where 1000
gallons was mentioned I actually said 1000 plus and suggested a ground tank
(dam) might be better. Clearly the sums are different for each garden but
this doesn't mean you can generalise and say it is fruitless or that it
cannot be done.
Perfectly serious. Not every house in the world has mains water. I don't.
You jumped at the "no hose bib" part and didn't notice the "connected to
mains supply" part. This was not intended to trap you at all but does
illustrate your thinking is a little narrow.
I am not talking about gardening in a desert but a place with erratic or
seasonal rainfall where a water tank or dam may be a great help. In a
desert I would give up on veges and fruit trees (as well as lawn) unless I
had a source of water not rainfall dependent.
I am using "what if" to try to get you to think about situations that you
haven't thought about. To suggest what I am describing is unreal or
irrelevant only shows you are making unwarranted assumptions. You should
stop being so parochial and not assume that the whole world is like your
back yard. This is an international forum.
A great topic! I am very dependent on rain water. My well water is too
hard, the soft water still not good for vegi gardens (Ok for flowers)
and the R.O. drinking water is way to expensive for a my 70 x 100 ft
vegi garden plus the almost same size area flower garden around the
house. A 1000 gallon tank would work out great for the August dry
spells. Currently I use 5 - 80 gallon rain barrels, just not enough for
those temporary days in Michigan.
Enjoy Life ... Dan
No way will 1000 gallons water 14,000 sq ft of garden, and certainly not
during dry spells when the ground will suck up water like a new sponge...
and during hot dry spells how will that 1000 gallon vat get filled before
you need to do it all over again two days later? And then you'll need to
hump all that water to where you need it, not so simple a task. Even if you
have a natural source (pond/stream) it's not so easy to bring water to the
plants. I happen to have a good sized deep pond on my property fed by a
natural spring but it's some 1,200 feet from my vegetable garden and 1,400
feet from the plantings around my house... the pond is down hill and there's
no electric there, so even if I wanted to transfer water to a small holding
tank there really is no practical way other than scoop/schlep/pour... early
on I tried that hauling 55 gallon drums in a cart with my tractor, never
again. Fortunately I decided to place my vegetable garden alongside a small
stream, which naturally keeps the ground in my garden just moist enough
during the hottest driest times.
My pond would supply plenty of water but is much too far:
I've got a decent sized stream too, but also much too far to schlep or pump:
Runnning water right along side my garden, much better than schlepping:
Nice yard, almost like mine. You must have a nice $6,000 lawn mower and
brush hog for the tractor also. My lawn mower is worth more than my
truck. Like me, lots of land - small home?
I would only water the vegi garden 7,000 sq ft with the rain water with
a pump hooked up the the 1000 gal tank. I could possibly get a bigger
tank. During the spring, it rains hard enough to fill up my 5 rain
barrels in 30 minutes or less, so a large tank would be fine. The
flowers can get the soft line or just suffer. I have a pond also, 250 x
250 ft and 20 ft deep in the center. Mine is over 2,000 feet away, I too
tried the 55 gallon drums - what a pain the ***, I gave up also. The
vegi garden is close to my home for hoses to reach about 150ft with
enough pressure to do the job. Since the dry season is only about a
month, I have thought about getting an outside portable R.O. system for
the outside line. I have seen one for $400 + filter cost, but wonder on
hard it is on the well.
In the past I have used the soft line, but the plants just do not grow
as well as the rain barrels. The hard line the plants do not grow well
Enjoy Life ... Dan
Makes no sense to pour RO filtered water on the ground, that undoes any
filtering... and even a commercial RO at best can produce like 20 gallons of
filtered water per 24 hours, which will produce some 80 gallons of grey
water. The typical home owner RO produces like 3 gallons of filtered water
per 24 hours, with about 10 gallons of grey water.
Of course it makes no sense to use softened water to irrigate crops either,
for pretty much the same reasons, pouring softened water on the ground
I honestly do not understand what you're saying about not using your well
water to water crops in the ground... didn't that water just come straight
from the same ground?
I have the same situation with my river. My solution is a petrol pump at
the bottom and a 10000l (2500gal US) header tank at the top with a buried
feeder line in between. You may see this as expensive but I designed it
into the cost of house and garden from the start. Without it I would see
thousands of dollars and thousands of hours of time blow away in a dry
spell. It was that or no garden except for hardy native trees and shrubs,
and a high attrition rate during establishment.
If you are wondering about my discussion of rainwater filling tanks when I
have access to a river it's because the river stops in dry periods and is
not recommended for drinking. I have a 45,000 litre (11,000US gal) drinking
water system. And a small dam of 2.3 Ml (550,000 US gal) for backup if all
else fails. The dam collected about 200,000 gal in a day this week.
You live in a very different world. My prvious last useful rain was 2
months ago, searing winds and 30-40C (112F) days since then. If I didn't
water during that time 50 fruit trees and the whole vege and ornamental
gardens would be stone dead. In the last week I got 233mm (9inches) of
rain. I hope the lurkers take this in and understand the different origins
of our points of view.
Is that after rain or does it run like that all the time?
I have one of those right now. It will vanish 2 days after the rain stops.
Yes, I realize that folks in different circumstances have different points
of view, and therefore different philosophies. Myself I'm a realist, after
passing my 50th birthday I realized that I'd best have a realistic outlook
towards what I'd be capable of in the future, and also of what my needs
would be. Even now I have no use for about 90 % of what crops I produce, so
what I can't use I try to give away, not always easy. Also being bent on
gardening I'd not choose a spot where water was a major problem, or I'd cut
way down on how much gardening, or I'd simply find different endeavers for
investing my time and energies that don't rely on water, perhaps take up
sculpting and knitting. But it's been rare that I needed to carry water
because of dry spell, and only because I put in some new saplings too far
for dragging a hose. Where I live as a rule there is too much water, there
are periods when it is too wet to mow without the tractor making tire ruts,
so I don't mow the wet areas until the ground drys out.
During dry spells that stream can shrink down to a damp spot although it
mostly runs, but during heavy rains and from snow melt it can easily become
a raging torrent overflowing its banks and then erosion becomes a problem...
last year I had to have an excavator come in to reshape and riprap that
stream. There is such a thing as too much water.
The little trickle running alongside my garden is spring fed so it runs all
year, in fact it continues out around my barn, crosses through woods and
fields, and fills my pond. During dry perids there is no visable water flow
but it's always damp and were I to dig down a few inches with a shovel the
hole would fill right up, the deer and other critters scrape small
depressions and get water that way.
Whoopee we are back on topic BTW! Rainwater is as soft as you can get.
Do your sums first on collection, storage and distribution. Poly tanks are
more cost effective (gallons per dollar) when larger (aroung here 23000l to
36000l are popular for house tanks) especially when you add the capital cost
of a small pump (and polypipe reticulation system if required). You can do
the installation yourself as it is low pressure but remember to protect
polypipe by buying or running on/under fences and to clamp bayonet joints.
If trying to fill it from existing roof plumbing consider that on a large
roof the gutters don't often flow to a single down pipe, some may run the
wrong way and have to be changed. Too few down pipes and the gutter will
overflow in a heavy shower wasting water and possibly causing damage. Sheds
and other outbuildings can be profitably employed too depending on location.
I will more than likely go the large tank route. About two years ago I
saw a Victory Garden show that had several small tanks hooked up each
gutter and sump pumps that transfered water near the home to larger
tanks near the garden. Sounds expensive at first, but should pay off in
time. The tank at the garden end would need power also? Perhaps solar
pumps? Hand pumps? Do I want run power 150 feet out?
The R.O. system I was looking at is at http://www.charleysgreenhouse.com
"6430 3-Stage Reverse Osmosis Water Filtration System with Storage Tank".
Max is 75 gallons per day ?????
Just weighing the cost and ease of each.
I would say my 5 rain barrels does the job two out every three years.
Last summer was a very dry summer and the vegi garden really suffered.
Enjoy Life ... Dan
Easier to put the tank near the power and run delivery pipe instead of wire.
My header tank and distribution pump are right next to the house, the poly
lines run out to the gardens and orchards.
Solar won't give much head but might do for drippers unless it is up hill.
I have time to think about, I'm in no rush. Septic tanks on east side of
home, propane tank west side, well cap and nice lawn on north side, a
deck on the south side .... hmmm, put the tank or tanks under 4ft deck
..., accessibility, will it stink?
I was thinking the over flow from rain barrels would lead to large tank
out by the garden. A large 6" inch flex pipe under ground from connected
rain barrels. still ... I want to consider esthetics and functionality.
I have lots of time to think.
Doing my taxes today ... so I will be in miserable mood for the day :)
Always around winter break.
Enjoy Life ... Dan
If you live where there's enough precipitation to fill the volume facility
you're talking about and keep it filled then you don't need to collect
water. Anyway Michigan is essentially an island surrounded by the Great
Lakes, if anything Michigan gets too much precipitation... aside from spring
rains in torrents there's enough snow melt to keep your ground too wet into
mid June. Drought in Michigan is rare, on the few occasions you need to
water, an hour with a garden hose from your well will suffice. And it's
counter productive to over water, with watering plants less is more. It's
better economics and less laborious to amend your garden soil with moisture
retaining organic matter and mulch than to invest in vats, piping, and
pumps.... and all your neighbors will be laughing at you hysterically when
they see you out in your yard doing a rain dance hoping to fill your tanks.
It will be less expensive to upgrade your well with a more powerful pump and
larger pressure tank. If you're real serious about mega gardening it's not
all that costly to have a shallow well installed just for irrigation. Also
consider an artesian well, they are common in Michigan.
An excellent description of Michigan. I live in the boondocks, my
nearest neighbor is 1/4 mile down the road, the only one I know. My
other neighbor is the Gas Company. They have no gas wells nearby and
they are the largest land owner. So no one will laugh.
Like I said before the wells in my area are very very hard - TDS (Total
Dissolved Solids) is 2500. It is very heavy in salts. So even drilling a
second well would not due. I admit I only need the extra water at most
one or two months every other year. My well water seems to harm the
plants, not help. No way drinkable without the R.O. under sink
purification system. The soft line also goes through sediment filters
which is not as bad. The good part of my well is that it has never gone
dry, provides large volumes and sufficient pressure. The rain here is
very consistent during spring and fall, rain is good for the garden. If
I win the lottery, I will get a house hold R.O. system.
One plus to $400 portable R.O. is that I dream of getting a small 10x12
green house. It would be a nice addition... someday. The tanks are a
little cheaper. The R.O. for outside hard line is small and might be
Like many people today am not sure about the economy and feel the need
to save more for the rainy days instead of spending for the not so rainy
days. Taxes are done, I will not receive enough for that nice green
Still Dreaming ... Dan
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