We have been planning this simple Grey Water System for quite sometime. It needed to be simple and cheap to do! So today was the day!! I will take you through the process with the photo DIY. We decided to use a collection box to trap the grey water and direct it to the veggie patch through a system of pipes. These pipes are the average plumbing pipes you get at any hardware store. It works like a drip system and spans the length of the 12m veggie patch. Here you can follow our process:
The two outlet pipes on the left comes from the 1st bathroom shower and basin and the other 2 outlets come from the en-suite bathroom shower and basin. The first bathroom is where we will collect the water for the veggie patch in the black plastic box. In this bathroom we will rinse only and use organic soap. The other bathroom we will use to scrub up and shower and wash hair and do the necessary -now these pipes will flow down straight through the black collection box and out to the bottom. This water will not be collected. You can see the grey water pipe coming out from the box – this is for the garden (I’m measuring it!)
Here the water will travel down and across to the veggie patch. You can see all the lengths of pipe waiting to be connected. Now the angle has to be correct so there is always a downward movement of water – no block ups! Don’t worry – we did a test in our planning! The black collection box just rests on the plumbing drain. This will keep it easy to clean. Precise measurements is always needed for a job well-done.
Now here you can see the neat cement job and the neat way the pipes come out of the wall. My hubby had to re-do the shoddy workmanship of the previous plumber – so this was a necessary DIY job. There is an opening at the bottom of the box – an outlet and plug – like in a sink. If it is in the middle of winter, I can release the water to flow direct into the drain – not to over-water the garden! Smart, hey!? Here you can see three pipes collecting into the bin and the right pipe going through to the drain.
Now all neat and finished off with a lid.
Now you can see how the outlet pipe from the black collection box is hidden under the stones. It travels up slightly before turning to the veggie patch and the pipe comes back up to the surface. Now the exposed pipe has holes drilled at the bottom (you can see the black dot drawn on top to locate it). The pipe rests on stones to prevent dirt clogging up the drip holes.
The grey water does not come into direct contact with the plants or their leaves, so it is very safe. It drips into the ground and I have created furrows for the water to travel down to the end, giving good spread of water. You don’t want it to pool in one spot.
Now for the lettuces and vegetable seedlings! The vegetable patch is now ready for the winter planting! We should have done the Grey Water System in summer when the water was needed, but time is always the issue. At least I had the use of all the water we collected in the JoJo Tanks. I only used actual tap water twice when it was really hot!! So this new watering system will work continuously throughout summer!
Very proud that the Grey Water System is now in place and no more waste of precious, usable water. My Jojo Tanks in place as well so this garden is truly water wise!!
We all need to be aware of how precious water really is and to be mindful as to how we use it sensibly. Everyone can do their small part and store it – save it – use it wisely! What other ideas do you have? Lets share our ideas and innovative ways !!
Happy Gardening xxx