I have a sign in my front yard, a memento of a very interesting project, it reads “Water Retention & Mosquito Control Project.” People are forever asking what it means.
I got a call one day from a woman who asked to see me. Intrigued by the address I went out forthwith. “All my neighbors are digging wells,” she said, in the midst of the 2008 drought. “I want to do something different. I’ve noticed that all the water coming down my driveway runs to one side and I am wondering if we can catch and save it somehow.”
Sure enough, that was the case. Upon examination, I found that all the rainwater from her property and 2000 foot drive all came to one spot before going out to the gutter. Everything else was downhill. Why not dig a pond to catch and store the water for irrigation, etc?
We installed a catch basin where the water collected, installed an eight inch pipe to funnel the water to a 6000 gallon pond we constructed in our usual manner with a waterfall spillway to the existing creek below. Hence a very natural pond–that attracts ducks–and a source for irrigation.
For the mosquito control part, we introduced bass and gambusia (mosquito fish) to the pond with their voracious appetites to consume the mosquito larvae.
Hence, a beautiful source of otherwise wasted rainwater.
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