Just as you can’t take the risk of drinking heavily contaminated tap water, you should also not make your plants do it. Why? Because it can affect your plants’ health severely, hindering their growth and disturbing their chemical metabolism. No doubt that tap water contains a higher concentration of minerals which saves you the cost of fertilisers but it also contains toxic chemicals (sometimes up to an alarming level).
The chemicals, like chlorine, are added to the water line for sanitization and softening purposes. Generally, the chlorinated water is considered safe for the plants but if your tap water is highly chlorinated, you need to dechlorinate it first, otherwise, it may burn the plants in a few hours.
Thus, in this article, we are going to discuss some tips regarding How To Make Tap Water Safe For Plants. The methods we will discuss here are super simple and don’t require a high-end tool or expertise. All in all, any homeowner can use these hacks to make the tap water safe and healthy for his houseplants.
How To Make Tap Water Safe For Plants (Tips)
Dechlorinating the hard water
The simplest way to dechlorinate the hard water is to boil it and let it stay under direct sunlight for one or two days. At boiling temperature, all the bacteria will die and impurities, including the minerals and salts, will get separated, in the form of limestone deposits. In this way, when you let the water stand for some time, these impurities will settle down in the container’s bottom. Once settled, pass the boiled water across a filter paper or a fabric to separate the salt deposits from the pure water.
Similarly, after boiling the water, when you’d keep the container under sunlight, the chlorine will evaporate, freeing up the water from all the toxins. After that, you can use this boiled water for your houseplants, without worrying about negative consequences.
Dechlorinating the soft water
Unlike hard water, you don’t need to boil the soft water to purify it. Instead, all you need to do is to take tap water in a wide-mouth container and let it stay there for 24 hours, either under sunlight or under the sky, overnight. In either condition, the chlorine will evaporate from the water, leaving behind a safe and healthy water content.
If you have to water your houseplants daily, it’s better to fill the container with tap water, every time you are down to watering the plants and leave the container under the sky until the next day. Another way of dechlorinating the soft water is by pouring water from one vessel to another and keep doing so until the air removes the excess chlorine from the water.
Lowering the pH
You need to act on this tip only if you are not growing alkaline-soil-loving plants. Generally, the pH of tap water is quite high since it contains high levels of calcium ions in it. These calcium ions not only boost the pH of tap water but when this water goes to the soil, it increases the soil’s pH as well. If you don’t know then high pH can make it difficult for your plants to absorb essential nutrients from the soil due to which they begin to yellow, wither, and die eventually.
To prevent this from happening, you need to lower the pH of tap water by adding a small quantity of phosphoric acid to it. However, while doing so, you also should keep monitoring the soil pH to prevent lowering it below 5.5.
Tap water may consist of so many invisible toxins that can destroy your plants harshly. The best way to remove these toxins is to pass the water through an electric filter. Electric filters usually possess mesh filters and chemical filter nets that can capture everything other than water. Resultantly, you’ll get safer water, with zero toxins or contamination. The water quality association has confirmed that the tap water that is filtered via reverse or distilled osmosis is probably the best for plants.
Disinfecting the tap water
Tap water may contain several disease-causing bacteria and viruses which if not treated may put the health of your house plants at risk. The best way of disinfecting tap water is, although, boiling it out but if you can’t boil it due for whatever reason, you can disinfect it with household bleach.
Remember that you need to add only a minute quantity of unscented chlorine bleach. After mixing it with tap water, let the water stand for thirty minutes, after which, put the container under the sunlight for 24 hours to dechlorinate the water and that’s it. Besides household chlorine bleach, you can also use chlorine dioxide and iodine tablets.