Thursday, April 12, 2007

Getting ready for spring

I am always on eBay. Who isn’t? I am typically trolling for old postcards, architectural illustrations, books, you name it. I sometimes have to be reminded that there are a lot of other items that are not related to the antique world that can be found there. This week, I started searching eBay for rain barrels.

Though it still feels like winter here, I am optimistic that there will soon be a day where I can spend some much-needed time in the yard. Like everything I am doing around the tiny bungalow, I have grand schemes. This translates to allusions of the perfect Prairie garden: native plantings, brick patio, modest pergola, vegetable and herb garden, water feature, composting area, and rain gardens. How could I ever accomplish all of this grandeur and be ecologically sensitive without rain barrels? I thought that I should aim high in my garden expectations so I actually bought two.

It still seems kind of odd to me, to purchase a constructed thing to catch rain. My grandmother used to have plain garbage cans located under her downspouts and she would dip her watering bucket into it (notice I said bucket and not can). Grandma was a low-tech gardener but her plants always looked great. I am sure she would think that I was getting a bit too fancy to get something with an actual spigot and screen against insects (I don’t think they had WNV in her days) let alone anything that controls or diverts overflow. “Overflow? Can’t it just spill over the edge of the garbage can into the yard; it’s getting wet with rain anyway?”
I am lucky and the rain barrel guy is not too far from us. I go to pick them up this weekend. Don’t hold your breath on them getting installed anytime soon… …it is still snowing here in Chicago.

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