Build A Rain Barrel

What Is This Video?

How does your garden grow? Join Kiana, Kaya, and Kalea as they photograph and sketch their garden, chart how much rain falls, and build a rain barrel when there's no rain in sight.

Conversation Starters

  • In the video, Kaya says their town asked people not to water gardens or lawns with the hose to conserve water for drinking. Why would a town need to ask people to conserve water in this way? How would it affect someone's garden or lawn?
  • The family in the video built a rain barrel to help capture some of the rain that falls on the roof of their house. They can use this water for their garden. What other ways could you conserve water?

Explore Some More

How Does Your Favorite Plant Grow?

Take pictures or make sketches of one or two plants in your neighborhood each week. How do the plants change? When do flowers first appear? What happens to the flowers over time? Does something eventually replace the flowers?

Make a Rain Gauge

A rain gauge tells you how much rain falls over a period of time. It's easy to build one. Take an empty, clear jar and, using a ruler and permanent marker, mark off one-inch increments along the side. Put it outdoors where it won't get knocked over and check it once a week. Keep track of how much rain falls each week in a field notebook, just like the sisters in the video. (After recording each week's rainfall, pour out the water that accumulated so you'll get an accurate reading the following week.)

Build a Rain Barrel

A rain barrel is a great tool for watering a garden while conserving water. Try building your own from a large plastic trash barrel with a spigot at the base. Numerous websites offer simple instructions.