Adding a rain barrel to your yard is a good way to catch and recycle run-off from the rooftop. Matthew Orwat, Horticulture Agent and the Master Gardeners of UF IFAS Extension Washington County, recently hosted a Workshop at the Washington County Agricultural Center for people interested in making their own rain barrel.
Twenty participants arrived at the Ag Center in Chipley Saturday morning to get a short introduction in the practices of rain barrel construction, followed by hands-on instruction in which they got to make their own rain barrel. Mr. and Mrs. Rodney Sanford of Navarre, who traveled the longest distance and were the first arrivals, got to step up first. They chose their barrels and started down an assembly line with a Master Gardeners to assist at each stop along the line.
In a short time, each barrel had gone through a transformation with an opening cut in the top to catch rainwater, and a spigot was placed near the bottom to release water into a container, hose or drip line. A mesh screen glued over the upper opening was placed to guard against mosquitoes, leaves and debris. The opening was also able to be tailored to a downspout.
Assisting along the assembly line were Joe and Gerry Tharp, Terry and Glenda Wilson, Joe and Judy Ruff, Ray and Linda Pigott, David and Mary Carswell, Karen Roland, Charlotte Sapp and Roxanne Bush.
A few extra barrels were prepared, so if you are interested in purchasing a rain barrel from Washington County Master Gardeners, call the UF IFAS Extension Office in Washington County at 638-6180.