With all the talk of saving water, I have not seen a suggestion to save rain water. Why let it run into the street? You can buy special rain water savers but why not make your own. Direct your drain spout into a large garbage bin and siphon the water out with a hose to where ever you want to water.
I built my rain barrel system (three barrels daisy chained together) back in 2002 and it has worked flawlessly! I do drain them in the winter to avoid freezing the spigot (I live in West Michigan where it does get cold in the winter). I have window screen as a removable filter to keep the trash out as well as keeping out mosquitoes. There is a helpful set of instructions on the web site of the Michigan Division of the Izaak Walton League (national conservation group). Just visit
www.michiganikes.org and look on the left side for printable documents.
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