My husband and I mused about having a rain barrel to catch the abundance of rain that has been pelting Central Illinois for the month of June. In one of those serendipitous moments, I spied a large industrial barrel at a country auction. It had not occurred to me that the fiberglass and metal black barrel might make an ideal rain barrel. I nearly missed it. As the auctioneer called for bids, I snuck forward to peek inside. Sure enough, it was 1/3 full of water as were all the other items up-for-bid that had any kind of opening; it had rained kitties and puppies the night before. Now that I knew it would hold water, the $2 bid he was asking for was certainly do-able. I waved my number and took it home.
Handy husband, Butch, set about using scrap lumber from the deck project he completed with our son Dirk to make a heavy covering for the barrel. It is good treated lumber and certainly will not blow away as it weighs about 12 pounds. Sitting at the corner of our lower level porch roof, our rain barrel is already 2/3’s full. He crafted a handle on the top of the lid to make it easy to remove when rain is forecast.
The simple design looks right at home on the old barn patio. We will be dipping water out of the barrel by the bucket-full until he is able to put in a faucet. He also has plans to make a pedestal for the barrel high enough to fill buckets from the bottom. Using scrap lumber, this project cost us all of $2. Serendipitous indeed. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~