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Biomimicry in Greywater Systems


    Profile photo of Zander Hathaway Jun 14, 2012

    In the below video, you will meet my good friend, Sandgarden Dick. See what a beautifully sustainable living space he has manifested with only $15,000 and lots of recycled “waste” materials.  Not only does his house heat and cool itself, it produces food and other useful materials, is protected from fire, and facilitates greater connection with nature.  Richard’s website,, is highly recommended for insights and inspiration relating to permaculture, ecological healing, and local economies.

    His greywater system utilizes biomimicry, by simulating the natural features of watersheds that clean water.  His video will give you a tour of the wetlands, streams, ponds, garden, and reservoir of their waste system.  From the highest point on the land, water enters his wetlands of bamboo, cat tails, and arundo.  There are many herbs growing in the ponds and garden, such as basil, parsley, artichoke, three kinds of apples, and a strawberry patch.  As it channels into a stream, the water is cleaned by watercress and mint until it reaches the reservoir to be further scrubbed by water hyacinths and duck lettuce.  Then, it goes underground to the main pond, and by then it is so clean and oxygenated that the wild animals prefer drinking this water over other nearby sources.  Finally, there are overflow valves which can be directed into various sealed garden beds, and the water is piped back into the system.  Super cool!!

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