How much water will your garden need this year? This handy guide from Urban Farmer Store (a Bay Area HOG distributor) breaks down the equation for you. Their sample features a 10×10 veggie garden watered with drip irrigation in zone 1. Click here or on the image below to start calculating!
2013 in Review
Thank you for helping make 2013 an eventful and productive year for us at Rainwater HOG! From magazine-worthy green home renovations to a clever green roof irrigation system for a home in the Chicago suburbs, and from a school garden in New Jersey to our inclusion in TEAM ASUNM’s SHADE Home design at the Solar Decathlon 2013, we’ve had an exciting year!
“The Rainwater HOG makes it easy to commit to a lifestyle of rationalized use and conservation. The system boasts negligible costs, simple technology, and immediate results.“
-Beverly Maloney-Fischback, CEO, Founder and Publisher of Organic Spa Magazine
The HOGs are a great product and a very clever design. With only a narrow gap along the side of my house which would have otherwise been unable, the installation of the tanks there has been of real benefit. The post-sale care and service of the HOG team has been fantastic and I could not be happier with this product.
– Ian Goff, homeowner Sydney, Australia
I was looking for a system that would be able to sit as flat against the wall as possible, which could easily form and array and where the integrity of the connectors was paramount.
– Michael Ruehle, GREENHeart Builders, Inc. on why he chose HOG tanks for the Brietzke install
“This is an awesome addition to our school garden!”
– Jack Griffith, Egg Harbor City Community School (EHCCS) principal, on two Rainwater HOG tanks for the edible school garden.
A Novel Collection System in Maui: From Air Conditioner Drip to Garden Water
Warren Jessop of Maui Catchment Service has designed and installed a HOG water catchment system for air conditioning condensation – a use that demonstrates the multi-functional adaptability of the tanks.
“If you have plants around the building, why not water them with the AC condensate?” asks Jessop, who was looking to move water from a potential problem spot to “where it could do some good” hydrating thirsty plants with his pressurized (non-gravitational) HOG install.
Jessop’s client, Volcano Maui Group, LLC owns a three-level commercial office building in Lahaina, Maui. A basement-level private parking lot is available for tenants. The condensation generated by building’s AC systems (12 in total) is collected and discharged via one main pipe into in a rain drainage sump located below the basement parking lot, where the presence of the water presents various maintenance issues.
The solution? Plumb the AC collection pipe to a four-HOG system, and use a pump to redistribute the water via pipes and drip irrigation to the yellow hibiscus, red ginger, multi-colored crotons, night-blooming jasmine and other plants growing outside in the gardens of the exterior parking lots.
The catchment system is installed around a central elevator shaft, the location of which made the narrow HOG tanks the best choice for the job. This HOG installation collects water for distribution without restricting driver access or maneuverability in the underground parking lot.
“Rainwater HOG [tanks] make it easier to catch the water without taking up a lot of space,” says Warren Jessop, who sees the HOG air conditioning catchment system as a replicable model for other commercial buildings.
The ‘primary port’ tank (shown above) serves as the collection point from which the air conditioning water is dispersed across the four-unit system, as well as the distribution point from which the water is pumped out.
“The tanks are drip free,” reports Jessop, who installed a 5′ tall 3/4″ PVC pipe inside the ‘primary port’ tank which sends out the water with the help of a pump. It is accessed via a piggy-back float switch in the tank that sends irrigation water out automatically once the reservoir reaches a certain level. Pipes along the ceiling lead the water to a drip-irrigation system for the outdoor vegetation.
Transforming unwanted air-conditioning waste into water-savings is just one out-of-the-box (or maybe we should say, around-the-box) way that HOGs, with the guidance of an educated systems-installer, can save the day.
Maui Catchment sourced the four HOG tanks from Green Builders Depot.
Water-centric Green Design News
After a historic dry stretch here in California, the skies are full of sweet, sweet rain. Almost as full as our October/November newsletter, brimming with two months worth of water news! We check in with some familiar folks: following Team ASUNM to Irvine, California as they compete in the Solar Decathlon, and visiting a GREENheart Building installation in the Chicago suburbs that showcases the versatility of our HOG tanks in the hands of an experienced builder.
Two separate reports highlight water’s value and risks to the U.S. water system from aging infrastructure to water-guzzling energy production methods. We’re back to the world of whimsy, and clever design with Lampbrella, featured in this month’s B.U.G. Design section. Come on and dive in, the water’s fine!
GREENheart Buildings Inc. Designs a Water Capture System for a Residential Green Roof
What happens when homeowners want to feed a green-roof with harvested rainwater, but their downspouts and gutters head straight down to the ground? Well, the Alexander/Fuoss family called in Michael Ruehle of GREENheart Buildings Inc. to design an ingenious (and partially hidden) HOG system to capture rainwater and pump it back up to the rooftop garden. Take a photo tour with us!
Highlights, for us, from the Alexander/Fuoss residential install include:
1)This ingenious install of HOG tanks includes two separate modular set-ups for one home. One system is installed horizontally, the other vertically – a nice display of what is one Rainwater HOG’s primary strengths in the rainwater tank market, a solid, elegant design that allows for multi-purpose, modular installs in tight space.
2) Basic common sense features for increased ease of use for the owners, like a manual timer pump and the screen insert for checking HOG water levels. It’s this kind of attention to detail that distinguishes a high-level installation.
For example, on his choice of pumps, Michael Ruehle explains, “A simple manual timer was chosen to allow the owner to set the pump to run for 5 to 10 minutes when the green roof actually needed irrigation, and then shut off. The owner checks the water level before running it. An automatic scheduled timer was ruled out because a) the plants might not need watering and b) it would be difficult to ensure that the pump wouldn’t run when the HOGs are dry.”
TEAM ASUNM Brings their SHADE Home to the Solar Decathlon 2013
After scoring high marks at The Solar Decathlon 2013 (and receiving 6th place in engineering), the takeaway for Team ASUNM is, not unexpectedly, increased confidence in their green building skills and knowledge. Through designing and building their net zero-energy home SHADE, the students of Arizona State University and the University of New Mexico have a hard-won knowledge and appreciation of innovative building techniques to prepare them for careers as green building professionals.
Thanks for taking HOG along for the ride, Team ASUNM!
After the Solar Decathlon, SHADE will travel to Albuquerque and Santa Fe, where it will be showcased at the New Mexico state capitol for six months. It will then return to Phoenix, Arizona, where it will stay for three years as a part of the city’s Phoenix Renews development plan. The home will be a centrally located model for sustainable living in a developing neighborhood where other houses will be encouraged to go green.
Water-centric Green Design News
We’re hitting the books this September with a filled-to-the-brim back to school edition of The Whole HOG. Three stand-out school installations, from Nundah State School, the Dalton School, and Omaha North High School, demonstrate how valuable HOG tanks can be in the classroom – indoors or outdoors.
We’re catching up with Team ASUNM as they prepare their SHADE home to compete in the Solar Decathlon 2013. They’re bringing six HOG tanks with them. And in our B.U.G. Design section, we take a closer look at the winning Illawarra Flame House (from an Australian team) in the China 2013 Solar Decathlon. Fellow Aussies and HOG founders, Sally and Simon Dominguez, say “Good on you, mates!”