Im in the design phase of my greywater system in a 1 bathroom house on a raised foundation. Kitchen sink and dishwasher will be routed to the front yard for 2-4 avocado trees and whatever else we plant on the edges of the mulch basins using a branch drain style system. We expect this system to provide 10-15G/day(GPD) and should be relatively cheap and easy to install. However, the backyard will be a little more complex. We will have water from the bathtub, bathroom sink, and laundry room flow out this way. Were expecting closer to 50-100GPD out of here depending on if our boys have a bath night and how many laundry loads were doing, but on average through the week 50-100GPD. Ive got lots of trees to water, but I think making all the branches in the system and leveling the ells is going to be too complex. Ive seen people using 1” irrigation piping to make it easier, and just use a 1/4” or 1/2” tee to deliver the water.
How do they make sure all the trees get the same amount of water if theyre not making all the tees level?
How are they flowing out such a skinny opening and not clogging the pipe?
I already have drip emitters running to my 50+ fruit trees and have toyed with the idea of a constructed wetlands with filters and pumps to use the existing line, but it just seems like too much work and money for that. The side of the house that this greywater pipe should be coming from is not heavily planted so anything is possible as far as how many trees get it and what kind. Its also the side of the house that has the rain tanks. Ive though about making it really simple and sending it to a pit inside a banana circle or 1/2 to a banana circle and 1/2 to a papaya circle. Theres also a 3’ deep hugel pit with a 3’ hugel mound on top thats a possibility for the water, but Im more interested in how that plays out this year without supplemented water. Im in zone 10a mediterranean climate and can grow some bananas, but not coconuts and it chills enough to get apples and stone fruits. Im hoping to get this piped and planted out before the rains come in a month or so.
Are there fruit trees that do better than others with greywater?
How close to the house can you safely dig mulch basins?
A coup;e of issues;
1 Think about a grease traps to catch solids from the kitchen sink.
2 1/4 tees may be too small for gravity feed water, unless it goes to a holding tank and drains from that. Otherwise you may find you have overflow issues
I have had success with 2 inch plastic pipes or 1 inch poly /soft pipe and valves to adjust the outflow at each point.
3 If you place mulch and water close to a house, foundation, moisture or termite problems may arise.
For moist and foundation issues at least 3 feet with no flow towards the house.
John Daley Bendigo, Australia
The Enemy of progress is the hope of a perfect plan
I wasnt going to worry about a grease trap since the water and solids will be sent to mulch basins. Most, if not all, leftover food goesto the chickens, things they cant eat goesto the compost. Grease from pans gets collected and recycled, but Im sure some is going to wind up in the mulch basins. Ive seen people use mulch style grease traps, so why not just skip that and send it straight to mulch next to the tree? Will grease kill avocado trees?
I didnt think 1/4” would be big enough, Im just wondering how others are getting away with it. Ive thought of the valves, but that increases costs and seems like it would have the same effect as a smaller line. I see a lot of systems on youtube using the 1” poly pipe going to 1/2” PVC tees for the “emitters”. Maybe this just happens to work out for them, or its designed for a level ground orchard/garden?
I already have a sizeable portion of mulch near my house, termites are an issue in Southern California, but I dont have any signs of them yet. There is a gap between our house and the mulch, so I think were ok so far. I understand water close to a foundation isnt a good thing, but I have dreams of greywater espalier, this saves on piping and helps cool the house as well as getting more fruit per gallon of water. I could probably have the outlets to the mulch basins 3’ from the house and plant the trees between that.