We have some fantastic plastic barrels for collecting rainwater in the back yard, but want something a little more asthetically pleasing for the front yard (especially with sweet VL ready to explode any second). So, am looking for opinions here as I've found two different barrels that each have their own pros & cons.
First, a recycled whiskey barrel from http://www.kentuckybarrels.com/RainBarrels.html - here is a photo: I'm loving this one for several reasons: 1st - it is recycled! Wine & Whiskey barrels can only be used for so long before there is the need to find new homes for them. We have two already (not rain barrels), one that we in our kitchen as a chopping block and one we have in our front room with a pretty little lamp on top! :P So, back to why I like this - where we live there are a lot of wineries and we're not very far from the Moonshine Capital of the World ~ so it feels like supporting heritage, if that makes any sense. Plus, it has a wonderful cottage style to it and is made of natural materials. They do need some maintenance to keep them looking nice, especially with the rings, because they can begin to slip off if/when the wood dries out.
Ok, second choice. This one I found thanks to the wonderful site Groovy Green and their latest post: http://www.groovygreen.com/groove/?p=3419 & the rain barrel they got from Garden Supermart: http://www.gardensupermart.com/store/rain-barrels.php
Beautiful terra cotta look to it, but it IS made of plastic. Cool thing: there is a spot on top for planting plants. It is truly beautiful, but I'm not so sure it fits in with the style here. Plus, apparently this one might need to be brought in during the winter to prevent the plastic from freezing.
So what do you think? I realize this is just a personal choice when it boils down to it, but I am curious to hear what you have to say. Do you have rain barrels? How important do you consider the need for rain barrels? How many rain barrels do you see where you live?
Around here, not many. Isn't that a shame? Wouldn't it be nice to see government buildings with rain barrels outside, dripper hoses attatched to them, gently watering all those beautiful plants on dry summer days? All these homes with glorious plantings and landscaping, using collected rain water to give those thirsty plants a drink? And, to finish up with my grumble about Lowe's & Home Depot designed yards ~ where are the rain barrels there??
Why are my two glorious choices limited to two?? Shouldn't this be a booming market, with choices abounding? If green-washing really is so abundant and rampant, where are the rain barrels?
PS ~ I did have a glorious moment the other day, where it was drizzling and I was able to fill up the chickens' waterer with water that was coming out of the down-spout. I didn't mind getting wet, standing there in the rain, instead I felt envious of the tasty and beautiful water they were about to drink. If you're going to drink bottled water, how glorious would it be to drink it from a bottled that had been filled with captured rain water?