AUSTIN (KXAN) - This week John visits with ACC Permaculture instructor Caroline Riley, who showed us how she has implemented many techniques in her gardens that catches precious rainwater.
A very important lesson in permaculture is to learn how to retain the water that falls on your property. And it is very easy to do the same things that Caroline has done! Rain barrels are a great way to get started and the City of Austin offers a rebate between $0.50 to $1 per gallon for rainwater systems.
Rain gardens are designed to catch and clean the water running off of your roof. They help to improve the water quality of our streams and rivers because the soil filters out impurities before the water enters the creek, so they are not always appropriate for food gardens - it depends on where your runoff comes from. Riley's students used the City of Austin's Guide to Rain Gardens to design and choose appropriate plants for her garden
Berms and swales are used frequently by permaculturists and are a great idea if you have a slope to your yard. Since water flows perpendicular across a slope (downhill), berms and swales are built parallel with the slope allowing them to slow and capture runoff. As the swales are dug, the soil is mounded up on the downhill side of what now looks like a ditch. The swale is then filled with mulch and you plant your garden on the berm. Remember to amend the soil with plenty of compost on the berm! Berms and swales are great for vegetable gardens and are very easy to water.
The permaculture community is thriving in Austin and there are many educational opportunities. The Austin Permaculture Guild offers a certificate course , and it is a great community to join and learn from. And, of course, ACC is a great place to learn more. Information on the ACC Certificate Course in Permaculture can be found here .
For updated information on the Highland Lakes see LCRA's website.
More than 100 trees covered in lights now shine bright throughout Zilker Park. The Trail of Lights is open for another season.
A 10-year-old was killed while standing outside of a vehicle which lost control during the icy conditions, DPS said.
Travis County non-profit Center for Child Protection will benefit next March from an all day fundraiser at the Circuit of the Americas that will see plenty of donors racing on the track.
Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg heads to court this week as a defendant in a civil trial that could oust her from office.
Santa visited Austin early on Sunday, joining hundreds of motorcyclists for their annual Toy Run.
Late Saturday night into early Sunday morning, a light band of freezing drizzle traversed the I-35 corridor eastward. With sub-freezing temperatures, even the light precipitation created major problems.