The Watauga County Cooperative Extension, Soil and Water
Conservation District, and town of Boone are working with Rain Water Solutions to offer High Country
residents the opportunity to purchase the new and improved “IVY” rain barrel at a discounted
Rain barrels are water catchment devices often connected to a structure’s gutter, allowing rainwater to be reused for sundry purposes, such as watering one’s lawn or garden.
While rain barrels can be easy on the wallet, they’re even easier on the environment by recharging groundwater and preventing contaminants in storm water from reaching streams and other waterways.
But, according to extension agent Wendy Patoprsty, “Not all rain barrels are created equal.”
The IVY model, 43 inches high and 22 inches in diameter, provides “a new era of design innovation for an economical price,” she said.
The forest green barrel features a 50-gallon capacity, locking lid, two overflow ports, screened inlet and is composed of 50-percent recycled plastic.
“Best of all, the entire barrel and all the components are made in the USA,” Patoprsty said.
These particular models are being offered at a discounted price of $70 versus the regular retail price of $89.
Those interested in ordering should visit http://www.rainbarrelprogram.org/watauga-county, which also features a video and more information about the IVY rain barrel. Orders must be placed by May 30, and the barrels will be shipped to Boone on June 5 for a one-day pickup event at the Agricultural Conference Center, located at 252 Poplar Grove Road.
For those who’d like to meet IVY personally, one is on display in the foyer of the Cooperative Extension building at 971 W. King St. in Boone.
Watauga County Cooperative Extension is treating area creeks to some St. Patrick’s Day merriment.
Across Western North Carolina, streambank erosion — and the resulting buildup of sediment in stream channels — is having negative impacts on water quality and habitat for wildlife, including trout that live in the streams, Patoprsty said.
Live stakes – long hardwood cuttings from native shrubs – are an effective way to reduce streambank erosion.
On Saturday, March 17, extension is hosting a native plant demonstration and giveaway for residents in the High Country. All are welcome, but participants must register in order to receive free plants and lunch.
In partnership with a grant from N.C. A&T State University and local lunch sponsorship from BB&T Bank, workshop participants can walk away with tips on how to care for their stream and river, free native vegetation and a free meal.
The workshop will begin at 10:30 a.m. at the Agricultural Conference Center at 252 Poplar Grove Road in Boone.
For those unfamiliar with installing live stakes, experts will demonstrate by planting a 20-foot section of Kraut Creek during the day.
To register for the event, call the Watauga County Agricultural Conference Center at (828) 264-3061, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit http://wataugaces.blogspot.com/2012/02/greening-our-creeks-on-st-patties-day.html.