Twenty gallons per day and a use for leaky old stock tanks

I wanted to know how much water I really needed to keep the plants happy when it doesn’t rain, so I hand-watered for 3 days. Not with a hose, but by filling a five-gallon bucket and distributing the water with a watering can, like in the old (really old, you might even say olde) days. Four trips to fill the bucket was required to satisfy them. We get threats of afternoon showers but they haven’t yet produced anything but a little thunder.

I don’t actually mind this process, although it costs me about a half hour. I can afford the half hour and probably the 20 gallons. I also might burn a few calories carrying the 40# bucket across the yard.

At the barn, which is the property of some friends, there are leaky old stock tanks. We filled them with straw bedding about 2/3 of the way, and the rest with growing medium (vermiculite, dirt, topsoil and compost). Six of my seedlings and some beans have gone into these beds. It’s the first time I’ve ever grown in a stock tank. Someone in my neighborhood has planted in very shiny new stock tanks, which seems like a waste of a good trough to me.¬†Speaking of stock tanks, if you haven’t ever taken off your dusty boots and britches on a hot day and gotten in one full of cool, fresh water, well…you’re probably civilized. But don’t knock it until you’ve tried it. Wish I had a photo of that I could post (of someone other than me).

 

Author: Fire Horse

I live in Colorado with my husband Metal Pig, our son Evil Genius ("EG") and, for some reason, two Dalmatianesque dogs. One of my dreams is to show a respectable return on the investment I put into growing food in our suburban yard. We love plants but eat them too. I use grandiose terms when describing my garden, like "crops" and "nitrogen levels" but it's too small to be a farm. Maybe one day I'll hitch a miniature horse to a tiny plow and take out the turf grass in the front yard to make room for growing grains.

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