Juanita and Trent: Solving Overflow Problems

Challenge: Juanita and Trent are avid gardeners and own four rain barrels that harvest rain to water their plants. Unfortunately, water flowing from their downspouts and overflow from their barrels was eroding the soil and compromising their neighbour’s retaining wall.

Solution: After participating in a RAIN Home Visit, Juanita and Trent decided upon a plan to run excess overflow from their downspouts and rain barrels into an infiltration gallery (also known as a soakaway pit). Using the soil they dug up from the excavation, they built a berm to direct water away from their neighbour’s retaining wall and into the gallery where it could slowly infiltrate into the ground without causing erosion or flowing into the storm sewer.

They planted pollinator-friendly species around their yard. The plants’ root systems will help absorb and infiltrate water flowing from their rooftop as well as improve the soil stability around the retaining wall.

Trent installs infiltration gallery box

 Rock lined channels convey overflowBlooming Strawberry

Names: Juanita and Trent; Location: Kitchener, Ontario; Credit Eligibility: 880L Rain Barrels (4 x 220L) + 120L Infiltration Gallery = 1000L = 30% credit

“We have rain barrels because we don’t want to use municipal water. It doesn’t make sense that we use treated water for the garden when we can harvest the rain. The cost of water isn’t much because we’re spoiled with cheap water, but it’s the principle of it.” Juanita and Trent

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