Hard Water in the UK – How Much of an Issue Is It?

Water hardness is one of those terms you hear fairly regularly, but might not necessarily know what it means. Essentially, as water falls as rain, it runs over rocks, picking up various mineral deposits as it flows. Where there’s a lot of naturally occurring calcium and magnesium, hard water forms, which means areas with a lot of chalk and limestone.

Tests carried out across the UK have revealed that the ‘M4 corridor’ has a consistently high frequency for hard water, including Bristol, Bath, Reading, Swindon and London. Hard water is also especially commonly found in the Home Counties, like Kent, Surry and Hertfordshire. 
What’s the big deal? Well, unfortunately hard water isn’t a phenomenon only of relevance to scientists; it’s easy to tell if you’ve got it in your home taps. Hard water tends to taste worse, and causes a much heavier build-up of scale, scum and the tendency to break taps and piping if it’s left unchecked. 
Img source: globiesfeed.com
There are differences in the level of water hardness, and it’s typically measured in terms of calcium carbonate (CaCo3), with soft being under 150mg/l, hard being between 150 and 300mg/l and finally very hard being over 300mg/l. The British Drinking Water Inspectorate has reported that drinking water in England is generally very hard. This is all down to the abundance of limestone and chalk in the British landscape. London, for instance, gets its drinking water from the Thames and the Lea, both fed by limestone springs and chalk aquifers. 
Coastal areas tend to have softer water, especially in Wales, but also in Devon and Cornwall. Some metropolitan areas built their own reservoirs in the 1700s to have a more local supply (Manchester, most prominently), which had the added side effect of making the water softer, as it didn’t come into contact with any limestone. 
If you don’t actually live in Manchester, or any of the softer regions, it’s not a death sentence; there are ways of dealing with the hardness of your water supply. You can outfit your house with full home filtration systems, which attach to the piping system just before the water reaches the house, or you can fit specific filters to your showers and taps. If you can’t manage this, don’t worry, hard water doesn’t present a health risk, it’s just not the best for the plumbing, so make sure you clean your system out as often as you can.  


Callum Davies
Callum is a film school graduate who is now making a name for himself as a journalist and content writer. His vices include flat whites and 90s hip-hop. 

How to Find Water in the Desert

The desert is an unforgiving place. Between the heat, the scarcity of water and the fact that just about any animal that can survive in such conditions is fully capable of causing you some distinct harm, these oceans of sand prove to be a challenge for even the most experienced explorer.
In deserts, more than almost anywhere else, water is a truly precious resource. With such a lack of the stuff it’s a wonder that anything manages to survive such harsh conditions. However, survive they do, so where are they finding the necessary water?
For us humans, of course, the best approach is to take a decent supply along with us. Unfortunately, things don’t always go exactly to plan, so you have to use the resources around you to your advantage. In the desert, said resources are few and far between, but they are still present if you know how to find and take advantage of them.
The first place to look is in canyons and crevices; north facing in the northern hemisphere and south facing in the southern hemisphere. The reason for this is that when rain does fall, it is somewhat protected from rapid evaporation due to the shade given by the canyon. These pools can gather to significant levels during periods of rain or snowfall, and can sit in the shade for months, providing probably the largest supply you will encounter in the desert (short of lucking out and stumbling into some kind of oasis).
Another sure-fire source of water is in and around broad-leafed plants. Avoid evergreens, as they are not nearly as useful in terms of supplying water due to their much lower intake. Broader-leafed foliage such as palm trees, cottonwoods and willows simply will not survive without a decent water supply; if you can’t find any on the surface, dig down close to the plants and you should find small reserves below the surface.
However, plants are not the only life form that can bail you out of a tricky situation. The presence of birds and insects usually indicates the presence of nearby water. They, like us, depend upon it to survive, and will rarely stray so far beyond their reaches that they cannot make the return journey. Following their route should lead you directly to whatever water source they have found.
The final piece of advice often given as a last resort option is to head to higher ground. I’m a bit unsure on this one, as while higher ground will make it easier to spot nearby water sources of any considerable size, the exertion of climbing and the lack of shade could cause you more harm than good. You would have to be very lucky to just happen to spot water using this method, and once you’ve summited whatever high ground you’ve found, you may find that you have used up so much of your own reserves that you can’t even manage to travel to your discovery.
One final note before we finish: Do not drink from a cactus, whatever the movies may tell you. The liquid found within these plants is, in most cases, not water. Rather, it is a highly toxic compound that can cause vomiting, nausea and kidney damage. You can only safely drink from one of 5 varieties of fishhook barrel cactus, which isn’t toxic, but unless you’re confident in correctly identifying them it’s safer just not to bother. The fruit, on the other hand, is both safe and nourishing; although you may have to boil them to remove all of the hairs and spines.

Sam Bonson
Sam is an aspiring novelist with a passion for fantasy and crime thrillers. He is currently working as a content writer, journalist & editor in an attempt to expand his horizons.

Crystallised Tears Form Beautiful Natural Patterns

Everyone knows that snow crystals, and the snowflakes they form are an amazing source of natural beauty, but examining the way other kinds of water change state can reveal even more incredible kinds of natural artwork. A while back, footage of bubbles being frozen in mid-air did the rounds on social media, largely followed by comments along the lines of “OMG AMAZING” and so forth.

Dutch photographer and artist Maurice Mikkers has taken it one step further. At his home, there is an open invitation for people to come and visit, but there’s a condition – they have to cry. Thankfully, he’s not indulging some kind of bizarre fetish, the tears are caught in a slide, dried until they crystallise, and put underneath a magnifying glass, and the results are pretty spectacular.
Img source: Maurice Mikkers
 Every single one is different, and there’s a lot of variety between the different patterns, and we’re not exactly sure what causes the variation as yet. Presumably, it largely relates to the shape the tear takes as it settles, and the salt content of the fluid. 
Mikkers used a number of different methods to extract the tears, from sad memories to films to onions and chilli peppers. The original tear was his own, brought on when he was preparing to photograph some evaporated drug samples under a microscope, and caught his toe on the table, which made his eyes water. He extracted the tear, put it on a plate and let it dry out. 
Since then, he’s tried drying them in a climate controlled environment, testing out tears which are likely to have different compositions, and more. The rate of drying seems to have a lot to do with the shapes that appear, likely because the salt turns to crystal either more quickly or more slowly. 
Some have suggested that you might be able to discern the emotional context of the crying from the tear. That is a slightly ridiculous sounding statement, but it’s true that there are different kinds of crying, a single tear, or watery eyes brought on from a certain reaction will form differently to ones born from profuse, blubbery weeping. 
Just as a fun little aside, in case you wondered if anyone has ever collected enough tears to drink, some animals do engage in this activity, especially butterflies. Since they’re herbivorous, butterflies have very little sodium in their diet, so in some parts of the world, they land on the heads of turtles and crocodiles and drink their tears to supplement it. The turtles and crocs in question aren’t upset about anything, many animals will naturally weep just to keep their eyes moist, but still, tear drinking, it is indeed a thing.
A time lapse video showing the crystallisation process taking place – Maurice Mikkers
Callum Davies
Callum is a film school graduate who is now making a name for himself as a journalist and content writer. His vices include flat whites and 90s hip-hop. 

Can You Ever Drink Rainwater?

When you were a kid, did you ever get told off for sticking your tongue out to catch raindrops? Yeah, so did I, in fact I remember kids at my primary school saying that if you did you would get asthma  (kids are kind of stupid). While it might not give you asthma, it’s still pretty unwise to drink it. 
Think of it this way, that water didn’t start in the sky, at some point or another it evaporated, then cooled and condensed before falling back to the ground. There’s a lot of scope for contamination in that cycle, and even as the rain falls it can collect various airborne particles that you really don’t want floating around inside you. So, it’s pretty clear cut, then, don’t drink rainwater.
Well, as you might have surmised from the fact that this article is, well, still going, it’s not that simple. You can actually drink rainwater, you just have to approach it a certain way. It all comes down to the way the water is stored, and how long it is stored for. Suffice to say, there are no health benefits to drinking rainwater over the clean, regularly available kind you’ll find cascading out of your kitchen tap, but if you’re in a pinch, knowing how to make rainwater safe to drink is very useful.
Collecting rainwater is as simple as setting up a container to catch it, like a bucket or a tarp or even just a bottle, but then you have to go about making it safe. The simplest way is to use a water purification tablet, but obviously you can only carry a limited number of tablets, so if you need to do this repeatedly, it’s not exactly ideal. 
Portable water filter bottles are another viable option, and there are plenty of them available, but you have to make absolutely sure that the one you buy can turn rainwater into a safe drinking source, this isn’t always the case. 
How big is the risk if you forgo all that, though? Well, certain studies have shown that people who do actually drink untreated rainwater regularly generally experience little to no increase in illness, compared to drinkers of ‘safe’ water. This could be because they have built up a tolerance to any dangerous bacteria, or it could be because the general risk is lower than we thought. In either case, rainwater is going to have to be considered as a resource more and more as bottled water continues to become a greater environmental concern.

Callum Davies
Callum is a film school graduate who is now making a name for himself as a journalist and content writer. His vices include flat whites and 90s hip-hop. 

 

Identifying the Sea Monsters of Legend

The world is full of stories of magnificent beasts and deadly monsters roaming our oceans in search of prey. Some of them are straight up outlandish, others are misinterpretations of sailors’ tales, and others have a solid basis in fact. Real-life equivalents to many of the exotic creatures can still be found alive and well today, while others are attributed to misidentified fossils. Here we will shine a light on some of the more prevalent tales.

Take for example, the infamous Loch Ness Monster. Debate still rages today as to whether it exists (by the way, it definitely doesn’t), but its description does line up with another, very real family of aquatic reptiles. I am speaking, of course, about dinosaurs; specifically the Plesiosaur genus. 
In this case, the people behind the photograph that kicked it all off have confirmed their role in an elaborate hoax, but that hasn’t stopped theorists flocking to the site every year, desperate to find ol’ Nessie and earn their share of the beast’s fame. The similarities to Plesiosaur fossils simply provide enough fuel to keep the speculation alive, but most agree there is really no likelihood of one individual or small group surviving for this long in the relatively small body of water that is Loch Ness.
One mythical monster with a more obvious origin is the Kraken. Said to be large enough to sink even the largest ships of the era, and a prominent feature in countless stories and even films of today, rumours of the Kraken must have terrified weary sailors. The most worrying thing about it? The Kraken is not based on some long-since-dead fossilised bones; the creature from which we derived tales of this beast is very much real.
That creature is the Colossal Squid, the largest invertebrate on the planet. They can grow up to a staggering 14 metres in length, and have one deadly advantage over their famous relative, the Giant Squid, other than sheer size of course. Whereas the tentacles of the Giant Squid are covered in suckers equipped with small teeth, the Colossal Squid carries an array of sharp hooks, with multiple points and even capable of movement independent of the tentacles on which they are located. While sightings are incredibly rare, and attacks on humans unheard of, it’s easy to see how tales of this animal evolved into the deadly wonder that is the Kraken.
A few other commonplace legends can be attributed to sightings of real creatures. Sirens and Mermaids, for example, are thought to be inspired by dugongs living along rocky coastlines. This would explain Columbus’ disappointment when he wrote of encountering one, as he stated it was “nowhere near as beautiful as described”.
Finally we have the most widely reported sea monster of all time, even appearing on countless official maps. I refer to the Sea Serpent, which also has a direct inspiration in the real world. While the Giant Oarfish is perfectly peaceful, it is all but confirmed as the source of this particular legend, being found in just about every region where Sea Serpents apparently roam.
So, if you’re desperate for a dose of the mythical, don’t make any plans to go after Nessie. Instead, look towards the sleek beauty of the Giant Oarfish, or the terrifying image of the Colossal Squid. These are the beasts of legend.

Sam Bonson
Sam is an aspiring novelist with a passion for fantasy and crime thrillers. He is currently working as a content writer, journalist & editor in an attempt to expand his horizons.

Christ Critters – Animals That Can Walk on Water

I promise that’s the first and last Jesus reference you’ll see in this article, it’s just too obvious. Land animals find many intriguing ways to adapt to water. Some dive beneath the surface holding their breath, others just dip their heads or feet in, and some even use bubbles of air to create a natural aqualung.

For a particular, varied subset of creatures though, that’s not an apt solution, some need to stay on the surface in the name of survival, but also need to be near water. So, they find ways to walk on water. There’s no rule of thumb for this, every animal that does it has a different approach, and all are amazing. 1,200 different species have been documented exhibiting this behaviour, but since time was still a thing last I checked, we’ll stick to a few choice highlights.
Brazilian Pygmy Gecko
In order to be able to move across water without breaking the surface tension, lightness is key. The less you weigh, the less of you there is to break into the water. The pygmy gecko averages at about 3.5 centimetres long, making it one of the smallest lizards in the world.  Concordantly, they weigh about as much as an ant’s handkerchief, but that alone isn’t enough to save them from a watery grave. Remarkably, their skin is actually hydrophobic; it repels water, enabling them to skitter across the surface without sinking.
Western Grebe
In this instance, it’s not a survival technique. Rather, the western grebe is just showing off, the prima donna that it is. The actual method they use to walk on water is called ‘rushing’, and it’s an intrinsic part of their mating ritual. They lunge forwards, rapidly beat their wings and then pump those crazy legs, propelling them forwards across the surface with only their feet still in contact with the water. It’s an impressive spectacle, to say the least, and it owes to the shape of their feet, which are lobed, with paddle shaped toes to help with propulsion. Awful on land, but perfect for their unique rendition of the running man.
Water Strider
Sometimes referred to as pond skaters or skippers, these bugs are surely the most recognisable of the water walkers. You can find them all over the world, in fresh water, shallow seas and even the ocean. Their success owes to their uniquely refined ability to spend their entire lives skimming across the surface of the water, waiting for other, less suited bugs to hit the surface, and consume them. Their legs have a layer of waxy hairs which repel water, and they use the force of this repulsion to push themselves around on the surface. The only time they require any kind of non-liquid surface is when they spawn.
Basilisk Lizard
These excitable, arboreal lizards are only found in certain parts of Central America. They are not aquatic, nor are they necessarily dependant on standing water, but they almost always live near it, and they’ve found a way to use it as an effective countermeasure against predators. If a snake, larger lizard, tarantula or whatever other hunter approaches, they’ll shoot off from whichever rocky or wooded foothold and literally run across the surface to safety. By rapidly gyrating their hips (calm down) and using their tail as a counterweight/rudder, they can make air pockets which will keep them from sinking, provided they keep up their momentum. 
Fishing Spider

One of the reasons water striders can do what they do so gracefully is because of their tiny, slender bodies and long legs. Fishing spiders are actually pretty big, and bulky, but amazingly they can perform the same trick, albeit without quite the same level of manoeuvrability. They spend much of their time just over the edge of the water with their front legs resting on the surface. They wait, ready to strike, until they pick up a ripple, much like land spiders use vibration webs. 

Like water striders, their legs are water repellent, allowing them to slowly glide towards their likely drowning prey (hence the leisure pace). If needs be they can speed up, either to quickly subdue a surfacing fish, or escape a hungry one. They can also raise three legs, and use wind currents to move them around, like they’re sailing. They can also hide beneath the surface, coated with a fine layer of air bubbles, as a form of ambush. 

Callum Davies
Callum is a film school graduate who is now making a name for himself as a journalist and content writer. His vices include flat whites and 90s hip-hop. 

 

The Variables Affecting Water Colour at Beaches

We all enjoy a few hours (or days, or weeks) pegged out on the beach by tranquil waters as clear as crystal, but depending on where you are, you can’t always find such a location. The distribution of the world’s oceans is far from being a simple process, and there are many factors at work in determining the water colour, from murky grey to gleaming turquoise.
As it turns out, that greyish, apparently dirty colour is the result of what’s in the water, but it is far from being unclean. The darker colouration is actually caused by a combination of phytoplankton (algae), zooplankton (small ocean-wandering species such as jellyfish) and other sediments. In areas where this sediment is primarily comprised of lighter substances such as sand and silt, the sediment layer is more easily disturbed and churned up. This, in turn, can cause a greyish colouration. Where heavier deposits comprised generally of shell pieces and dead coral are present, waters tend to be clearer as the sediment layer is less easily disturbed.
The other thing you have to consider is the Earth’s rotation. As the Earth spins, the planet’s oceans move from west to east, creating a phenomenon known as upwelling along western-facing coasts. This has the result of replacing the warmer surface water with colder, sediment-rich water from the depths. As such, coastlines at the edge of large water bodies such as the Pacific Ocean tend to have murkier waters. In other areas, coral reefs and other structures, natural or otherwise, act as a barrier. This prevents the coastline from being affected by upwelling, again resulting in clearer waters.
So there you have it. While some coastlines are indeed murkier, often looking thoroughly dirty, there is no real reason not to enjoy them for all they’re worth. After all, it’s not filth, it’s just nature.

Sam Bonson
Sam is an aspiring novelist with a passion for fantasy and crime thrillers. He is currently working as a content writer, journalist & editor in an attempt to expand his horizons.

The Best Diving Spots: Central America Edition

It would be a total disservice to Central America to place it in the same category as the rest of North America for diving. They are almost two different worlds. This short little band of land which millions of years ago connected the two Americas has its own climate, and lively, rich coastal activity. It’s long been recognised as a hidden gem for diving, and in recent years it’s only grown more popular.

The Big Scare – Costa Rica
The Bat Islands sit some 45km north-west of Playas del Coco on the north coast of Costa Rica. They are part of a sizeable marine reserve, and the diving season runs from May until September. The dive site itself drops to about 30 metres and there can be a strong current, so beginners may want to reconsider, but for those bold enough, it’s an incredible dive. The coral is minimal, and fairly unremarkable, the real draw is the group of massive bull sharks which frequent the area. These huge predators are a marvel to dive with, and on a good day you’ll likely also encounter manta rays, sailfish and perhaps even a whale. 
Mary’s Place – Honduras
The Bay Islands offer the best diving of anywhere in Honduras. Utila has a number of beautiful spots, like the Black Hills seamount and Duppy Waters, but it’s Roatan which hosts the crown jewel. Mary’s Place can be identified by the huge rift in the coral wall, caused by volcanic activity. As well as diving into and through the chasm, you can swim around the perimeter, which is teeming with big sponges and fan coral. When the sun hits the chasm, it lights up in an unparalleled display of marine colour. Your typical roster of coral fish are in residence, as well as groupers, stingray, octopus, flutemouth fish and various weird and wonderful nudibranchs.
Hannibal Bank – Panama
Until 2004 Coiba Island was home to a prison with a rather nasty reputation. Tales of murder, torture and general awfulness kept locals from venturing anywhere near the island, but since closing down, the area has become one of the most verdant national parks in all of Central America. There are numerous dive sits around the island perimeter, and it’s one of the best places in Panama for diving with pelagic fish. This is especially true of Hannibal Bank, a 46 metre deep drift dive through one of the most popular mating grounds on the pacific coast. Huge schools of jacks, snapper and eagle ray are in abundance here, and as such, they attract predators, most notably hammerheads and black tips. You may even see a tiger shark, on a good day, and if the waters are calm, you can sometimes hear the distant singing of the humpbacks.
Blowing Rock – Nicaragua
Slowly but surely, the Corn Islands are becoming one of the most desirable diving destinations in the Caribbean. The reefs are unbroken, coated with rarer corals like elkhorn and staghorn and a remarkable abundance of larger fish like grouper and sharks. Little Corn is the more popular of the two for diving, despite being relatively underdeveloped on the land. There are numerous spots to see eagle rays, nurse sharks and hammerheads in the shallows, but about 17 miles offshore lies Blowing Rock, a volcanic pinnacle which plays host to all the life you’d find back towards the coast, but almost universally in greater numbers. You’ll see lobsters traversing the sea floor in little groups (or ‘risks’), sea turtles, barracuda and the occasional bull shark.
Lake Coatepeque – El Salvador
There are plenty of coastal diving opportunities in El Salvador, but further inland a unique, fascinating alternative is available. There are two huge volcanic lakes – Ilopango and Coatepeque, which offer a completely different kind of diving. Coatepeque is the older of the two, having formed around 10,000 years ago, and it’s the better of the two for visibility and accessibility. Once you’re down there, the main draw is the presence of bizarre, fascinating volcanic rock formations, this includes various fumaroles and hot springs. Being that it’s had longer to settle, Coatepeque is also teaming with life, including zebra fish, catfish and guapote

Callum Davies
Callum is a film school graduate who is now making a name for himself as a journalist and content writer. His vices include flat whites and 90s hip-hop. 

The Most Dangerous Sailing Passages in the World

Sailing is a risky undertaking at the best of times, it leaves you at the mercy of the wind and the water, and it takes a lot of practice before you can even think about setting off into the open ocean, or even certain seas. Once you do, you’ll be able to experience the other 70% in a way few people can, but some places are so risky that even the most seasoned sailors avoid them with a passion. Despite the fact that we’ve mapped the entire surface of the planet, some places probably ought to still be marked with a red X or a big skull, these in particular.

The Cape of Good Hope
Don’t let the optimist name bamboozle you; the Cape of Good Hope is also often referred to as the Cape of Storms, and with good reason. The cross currents are unpredictable, freak waves are common, storms are frequent and wind speeds can often hit 30 knots or more. For these reasons, sailing around this rocky headland, which intersects the Indian Ocean and the Atlantic can be extremely perilous.
Point Conception
The Californian Pacific Coast is a beautiful part of the world for sailing, but Point Conception is the looming danger that keeps sailors vigilant. It separates the Santa Barbara Channel and the Ocean, identifiable by the lighthouse near the tip of the headland. Like the Cape of Good Hope, the weather is very hard to predict, owing to the high speed winds which travel in from the Aleutian Islands. The local Chumash tribe believe that Conception is the gate through which the souls of the dead pass from Earth to the paradise beyond. For the sake of all the sailors it has claimed over the years, I kind of hope that’s true.
Cape Horn
Sitting like an angry spike at the tip of Argentina, Cape Horn is often a checkpoint on round the world sailing races, and in many case’s it’s the choke point that puts teams out of the running, or worse. It is often referred to as the Everest of sailing challenges. The infamous ‘williwaw’ winds which blow across the horn are largely the cause of the peril, and the route most yachts have to take around the horn involves firing right into the worst of them. History is littered with stories of sailors who couldn’t best Cape Horn. In one case a pair of recreational sailors, Miles and Beryl Smeeton, survived one wreck, repaired their yacht in Chile and went to try again, but once again they wrecked and somehow managed to once more survive the disaster.
Strait of Malacca
So far on this list, you might have noticed that the most present danger of these treacherous sailing routes is largely high winds. Well, the Strait of Malacca has this too, as well as reputation for frequent storms, earning it the nickname ‘Lightening Alley’, but wait, there’s more. This 550 mile stretch of water between Malaysia and the Indonesian island of Sumatra has become nightmarish swirl of sea traffic, confusing currents, endless islets, floating debris, shallow shipwrecks and, crucially, pirates. It’s not as bad as it used to be, and commercial liners are targeted far more commonly than sailboats, but it’s still possible to get caught up in an altercation. Additionally, Sumatran bush fires cause a thick haze to roll in at a certain type of year, which is a terrifying prospect when you’re sharing a route with 350 metre long container ships. 

Callum Davies
Callum is a film school graduate who is now making a name for himself as a journalist and content writer. His vices include flat whites and 90s hip-hop. 

How to Build Your Own Rainwater Collection System

survivalistboards.com

In the most mountainous regions of the UK, there can be more than 4 metres of rainfall every year, and the rest of the country isn’t far behind. We talk about rain as if it’s this horrid, irritating blight that keeps us all inside playing Scrabble with our disgusting families, but in reality it’s a vital, replenishing force that keeps our planets green, our soil moist and our ecosystem stable.

Beyond simply letting nature water your plants, or reenacting your favourite scenes from any romcom released in the last 20 years, there’s another practical use for rain – collect and storing it. You can buy water butts in most DIY shops, but why bother with that when you can build you own? It’s a surprisingly simple process, and the rewards are well worth the effort.

Firstly, you need to get a storage unit. This can be a plastic barrel, bin or another other large storage container, as long as it has a lid. You want to be looking at a minimum of 100 litres of storage, anything smaller is pointless, you’ll be emptying it too often. If you decide to source one second hand, you need to make sure it had something non-toxic in it before, and then clean it with hot, soapy water. Get as many as you think you’ll need.

The next step is to create an actual collection system. There are a few different ways to do this, the main ones are to either redirect one your existing gutter spouts, or mount a length of hosepipe and a funnel. In the former case, you’ll need to buy an angled spout fitting to your home gutter system, replace one of the other spouts, place a grate at the top (so leaves and other debris don’t end up in the collector) and attach it to the barrel, sealing it all off with caulk. Alternatively, you can use bungee chords to hoist up a length of hose with a funnel (and filter) on the end and it does the same job without you having to lose a spout.

buildapedia.com

The last two things are the spigot and the overflow. Buy a spigot and make a note of the value size, then drill a hole of the same circumference in the side of the container, near the bottom, but high enough to fit a watering can or bucket beneath (the container should stand on some bricks or breeze blocks as well). Line the hole with caulk and then fit the spigot. Drill another hole of the same size near the top, parallel to the spigot, and fit it with a hose adapter, this way if you want a second container to catch the overflow, you can easily fit it.

Callum Davies
Callum is a film school graduate who is now making a name for himself as a journalist and content writer. His vices include flat whites and 90s hip-hop.