We hosted a two days of rainwater harvesting workshop at our house, building some basins to collect stormwater from the street and our roof, then slow it, spread it, and sink it. We hired an expert to design everything and she likes to have the work done with help from the homeowners and their friends. We had a great group of friends helping out both days and got a lot done.
Thankfully we had an excavator come out on Wednesday to dig through the hard soil and give us a good start on the basins:
This basin is for collecting water from the street, shown here before anyone got to work. The first hole is meant to act like a sediment trap. The basin behind it is pretty deep and will collect a lot of water in a big storm, making the Palo Verde and other surrounding plants very happy. Overflow is back out to the street, back at the entrance.
There are several more basins in the front yard for collecting water from the porch roof and whatever lands on this side of the property. Soil from the basins was used to make a cactus hill and to grade the land.
Here's what the big basin looks like after the workshops:
It's hard to tell what's going but it was a lot of work! We're not quite done, there's more mulch, rock, and gravel to put down, probably some adjustment of basins and swales. There are four other (smaller) basins in the front, and another large (but much shallower) basin in the back. Can't wait for it to rain so we can test it all out!