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Stormwater capture and reuse

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Rain that lands on the ground or driveways usually ends up going down the stormwater drain. Why not capture some of this water, not only for the benefit of your garden, but to reduce the amount of rubbish and pollution that goes into the drainage system and causes damage to our waterways.


Take a look at your garden when it is raining to get an idea of where puddles are forming and where water is flowing across the surface. Is there water simply running down hill or are there paved surfaces that are collecting water that could be redirected to the garden?


Once you have an idea of where the water is pooling or running off you can look at ways to capture this water for the benefit of your garden.


Clever landscaping


Landscaping can be designed to direct water to areas where it can seep into the soil rather than running off the site. Swales are a way of landscaping your garden so that it catches as much rain as possible. Swales are hollows or ridges constructed along the contour of the slope to hold water as it runs down the slope. The water then seeps into the ground for the benefit of the plants. In the home garden, swales can be subtle variations in the slope that are part of the landscaping without their function being obvious; wider swales can even be lawn areas.




Raingardens capture the water, allowing it to seep into the soil slowly. They can include ponds or water features and can double as a home for frogs. Raingardens are designed to capture the flow of stormwater coming from paved areas, overflow pipes of rainwater tanks or direct from downpipes from the roof of the house. The raingarden typically has an overflow point to a stormwater drain for when there is really heavy rain for extended periods. The garden should feature plants that can tolerate the soil going from very wet to periodically dry. Rocks or pebbles should be used as mulch, as these don't float when the water flows and end up clogging drains, but like timber mulch, they protect the soil from evaporation and suppress weeds.


Infiltration tanks


With a bigger budget you could even consider getting underground tanks that can be used to capture stormwater. Tanks can be constructed onsite to accept stormwater and allow infiltration of water from above through the ground. Surface drains or stormwater pipes can also direct stormwater into the tank. This water can then be used to irrigate the garden, or to flush the toilet if it is clean enough. In assessing whether to install a storage tank for stormwater, consider the extent to which you can prevent contaminants like motor oil from driveways, dog poo, fertilisers and sediment from entering the water supply. Prevention is a key to ensuring water quality.


Atlantis -
Ph. 1300 38 28 38

Azuratec -

EcoRain -
Ph. 13 10 04

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