The Real Know How

How-Tos, Videos, Tutorials — Ramping Up for the 21st Century

Archive for the category “water”

Rainwater Harvesting

Brad Lancaster from Tucson, Arizona talks about what got him interested in harvesting rainwater and some of the solutions he’s learned. Brad talks a lot about needing to develop secure water and food systems and relearning an interest in local foods and local resources (he gives the example in his area of the mesquite tree).

“Part 2 – developing a ‘resilience basket’ of local food with rainwater harvesting earthworks on neighborhood commons – greywater as an important household strategy and the successful Arizona code model”


Swales for Harvesting Water

Geoff Lawton demonstrates what swales do.

How to convert a washing machine into a water powered generator

buddhanz1, in New Zealand, shows us how to convert a washing machine into a water powered generator. It looks as if he may be using the municipal water supply to power his generator. At any rate, he gets enough power to live off-grid (powers his fridge, PC, lights, appliances — all the modern conveniences) and as he used mostly recycled parts the costs were minimal.

How to Install A Rain Barrel

A simple barrel filled by a simple elbow spout:

A fancier barrel filled by a rain spout ‘divertor’:

John Jordan’s interesting DIY set-up. He’s used a 50 gallon drum, T connector, plastic hose and a French drain to create his system.

Solving Water Runoff Problems Block by Block

This video shows water runoff solutions in Philadelphia. Some topics here are moving water off roofs, rain barrels, planter boxes to divert water and water as a resource.

Taking Action – A Greywater Install

Taking Action: A Greywater Install from Luke Brummer on Vimeo.

Improving Water Quality and Conserving Water with Porous Pavement

The idea here is that regular pavement doesn’t allow for water to seep into the ground. Instead, usually we end up with a lot of pollution in streams and rivers flooded with stormwater run-off or (sometimes severed) flooding. Porous pavement can prevent all that…

Porous Pavement from GreenTreks Network on Vimeo.

Fish Fertilizer for Potatoes

Francis Hill farms in Waboden, Manitoba, Canada. Here she shares a tip for using fish guts and bones to fertilize potato plants. She gets the fish bits from anglers.

Apparently fish are a great fertilizer. With all the contamination that has been showing up in ocean and especially in freshwater fish I would probably feel a little nervous about this method.

Harvesting Rainwater in Pennsylvania

Maximizing the uses of rainwater and minimizing the impacts of stormwater runoff through native landscaping, infiltration and harvesting for reuse was a goal from the start. This video looks at a property (house with barn and surrounding land) in Pennsylvania and what the architect did to design a more sustainable use of the water that falls as rain. Rainwater here is redirected to irrigate yard plantings and once filtered to a cistern that the homeowner says is full almost all the time.

Harvesting Rainwater from GreenTreks Network on Vimeo.

Preventing Soil Erosion and Water Contamination on the Farm

A look at what they are doing on a farm in Pennsylvania to retain topsoil and prevent fertilizers, animal waste and pesticides from getting into streams and ending up in Chesapeake Bay.

Some features looked at: swales, creating a non-cultivated space near streams, using vegetation as a buffer…

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