Pardon me for butting in

09 06 26_allotment_0003

I noticed my neighbour leaping about on his roof the other evening. Actually, not leaping: he was preparing his chimney for painting. He was, nevertheless, sprightly.

I thought nothing of it and continued to fill my watering can from the butt. Another drink for thirsty tomatoes.

Just to explain that my water butt collects rain from next door’s roof. I’m not sure whether his right of access extends to dumping rain water on my property. But, my plants don’t complain.

Anyway. A few hours later as I’m locking up, I saw a note had been put through the front door. It seems that paint preparation had involved bleach and my neighbour kindly told me that my water butt was likely contaminated.


Not only did I fear for my tomatoes, but given the current dry spell I thought it’s going to take ages to refill the butt.

Thankfully, no damage. I reckon the bleach was diluted anyway. I spent an hour emptying the butt. Since the bottom was full of sludge I haven’t had a working tap for ages. So, I had to empty by bucket.

Sludge drained, I have a clean butt. There’s about 40 litres in old milk bottles that I emptied from the butt over the winter. But, I’m going to run out soon.

Any rain dance recommendations?

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