Harvesting water is one of the good ways to relieve the pressure on the existing water resource and lower the cost of buying water for domestic and commercial use.
Types of water harvesting
There are three main types of water sources for harvesting namely:
1. Rainwater harvesting
This is a method for inducing, collecting storing and conserving surface runoff. Water can be collected from courtyards, rooftops and similarly compacted surfaces. There is also the micro-catchment water harvesting where the water is collected from the surface runoff from a small catchment area and have it stored in an infiltration basin. The basin can be planted with annual crops or a tree.
There is also the macro-catchment water harvesting, also called the external catchments. In Macro-catchment, run-off from hill-slope catchments is the conveyed to an area with crops at the foot of the hill or a flat terrain below.
2. Floodwater harvesting
Floodwater harvesting is the collection and storage of water from the creek flow and then diverted to the garden for irrigation. This kind of harvesting is also known as large catchment water harvesting. It is done in one of the two ways below.
You can have floodwater harvesting within streambed where water flow is dammed and inundates the bottom valley of the flood plain. Water is the forced to infiltrate, and the wetted area is used for agricultural purposes.
If your land is on a hill, water normally cascades straight off it and finds its way down before it can sink into the soil. You can slow the flow of the water by cutting stair-stepped terraces into the hill. A wall of stone can then support each step of the terrace. The terraces at as storage facilities for the ground runoff over the hill. The water forms a lens over time as it moves down. Plants reach the lens and can remain green during the dry season.
Rain barrel and cisterns
Rain barrels are underground water storage for excess water that your earthworks cannot handle. The barrel has fittings to enable you to use the water for your garden any time that you need. Cisterns and barrels stored water can also be used for flushing the toilet. Ensure that the piping system is well attached and a pump in place if you are pumping water from below the ground.
It is important to harvest as much rainwater as possible. Savings on water bills cover the cost of the facilities after a period. To learn more visit regenerative leadership institute.