Holly has convinced me to allow our milkweed to grow and this little visitor was the result. We were happy to see quite a few monarchs and swallow tails around the yard toward the end of the summer. So next year will see a growth in our butterfly garden with more common milkweed and other varieties planted among the butterfly bushes. Whatever we can do to provide a place for these dwindling beauties we hope will be of benefit. There is just something special about watching these delicate creatures flutter around the yard.
So the end of the season is coming and you can see fall approaching. Unlike the last two summers we have had more than adequate rains since spring. Plants have thrived and the harvest of most produce has been decent to abundant. It's going to be hard to empty all the tanks and barrels soon, we were ready for the long haul, but now we will focus on the shrubs and trees to give them a last good soaking before winter sets in.
We're looking back on the summer of good sales and the introduction of the larger harvesting tanks. It was wonderful to have people returning to expand their systems and new harvesters just beginning the process. You are the reason we are here, whether you have our systems or have built your own and need the accessories to make them work.
As we move into the planning stage for next season, give us some ideas of what you would like to have available here at the store. We are looking for ways to provide better serve and a wider variety of products. Check out the raised beds we are working on and the revised cedar and wire trellis (loved the natural fibers but they don't last). We'll have pictures on the site soon so you can see what is planned.
Thank you all for the support you have shown us and the kind words when we see you at various events. Joel and Holly
....Well, Holly and I have converted our front yard to a garden, veggies on one side, semi-jungle on the other. The veggies side had a cobbled together fence last year but this year we pledged to do better. So after the attack of the bean eating bunnies I finally got to work and we finished a nice cedar and rabbit wire fence. Only one night of deer prints after that but the beans and beets were still being wracked nightly. So the other day we were standing out front and figuring out what project to do when we noticed one of the fence sections seemed different. Sure enough, I had put it in with the little rectangles at the top and the big squares at the bottom, giving the bunnies a front door with private eating inside. The section was duly removed flipped and screwed back into place. We are now fully protected (yes we checked all the other sections again) and the beans have survived and the beets have been replanted (again!)
Joel Gettys is the co-founder of Rain Barrels Iowa. He is our resident gardener, product designer, chief of installation at our Rain Barrels Iowa store.