Our newest cistern is in place, poised to capture 1,000 gallons of water every winter. A volunteer found it used on Craig’s List and donated it to FECO.
On the last day of 2017, nine volunteers worked 2.5 hours to set a bamboo structure in place and to build and attach a 6′ x 10′ roof over the bamboo.
The bamboo structure had been preassembled by Jeff. He called it advanced fort building. We had previously cut the bamboo from the yard of Judy Scheinuk, a member of the Seattle Tree Fruit Society. She was delighted to have her bamboo thinned.
The roof is located to the side of the cistern and serves a dual purpose; it not only captures water for the cistern but also keeps organic materials (waiting to be composted) dry so microbial decomposition is minimized.
By early summer, we should have all three cisterns full, even though the new cistern missed the fall rain. Nancy did some number crunching, with the knowledge that we catch more rain each winter than can fit the in two older cisterns. She figures we can play catch-up by stealing 500 gallons from the two older cisterns and transfering that water now to the new one.
But, how to transfer the water? Stay tuned for Step 2 – installation of our new treadle pump.
FECO is the recent recipient of a third City of Seattle Department of Neighborhoods Matching Grant, related to water conservation and experimental watering methods. We need to volunteers to work 300 hours and the City will match with $10,000 toward our expenses.
We have three goals for the water conservation grant: 1) to use less or no City water, 2) to improve our system so we spend less time watering, and 3) make watering an easier task physically.