Let it rain

Now that it is officially spring, Durango residents are breaking out the gardening gloves and dreaming of green grass, vibrant flowers and lush veggie gardens. But living in an arid region can sometimes make vegetation droop. Luckily, last spring, Colorado passed a law allowing Coloradoans to begin collecting rainwater – up to 110 gallons – for personal use. The law went into effect last August, and the sustainability minded folks at 4CORE are helping to bring local residents all up to speed on rain water harvesting with a series of DIY classes. During the classes, participants learn how to build their own 55-gallon rain barrels for their own back yard irrigation needs. And with the right hand drill and rubber galoshes, anyone can look good doing it.

Avid gardener Eva McKown twists in a spigot for her family's new water-harvest system.

The 55-gallon rain barrel, held up by Laurie McGill, needs a few strategically placed holes for spigots and hoses.

Water harvesting expert Doug Pushard, from HarvestH2O in Sante Fe, instructs a group at Ska Brewing on a recent Saturday morning on the finer points of rain barreling.
Aimee Martin drills a hole for the spout in her barrel.