Did you know that there is water under the ground you walk on ?
Of course , that ’ s a ridiculous question . We all know there ’ s water underground . That ’ s why people have wells . And in this time of drought , when little is coming from above , this underground water is what may keep us going and keep us alive .
We have lived with rain catchment as our only water source since 1995 , when we finished building our house on Terlingua Ranch . Eleanor Foster , who is now 90 and at that time had already lived here for many years , was the only one we knew with a rain catchment system and she generously taught us the basics . We started with lots of metal roof ( house , patio , shed ), oversized gutters , and three 3,000-gallon tanks .
( The equation is one inch of rain on 1,000 square feet of roof provides 600 gallons .) We now have 16,000 gallons of capacity of catchment and storage . Water has never been a problem for us .
Admittedly , this is partly because we spend six months of the year in Washington state and only rely on our Texas water supply half the year . But we are also conservative in our water use and have always had sufficient rain , particularly in the summer months , to replenish what we have used , keeping our tanks full .