Garden

Irrigations

Irrigations



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Question: irrigation


Hello
I would like to ask you if tap water is good for watering all kinds of plants, such as aromatic vegetable geraniums, licorice and thunbergia, or you need to take some precautions to improve growth.

Answer: irrigation


Dear Gianni,
in fact tap water is not perfect for plants; many believe that it is the chlorine contained in it that ruins many plants, but it is a sort of urban legend, since chlorine is contained in small quantities, and besides this, it is very volatile, and therefore is released quickly into the air, rather than in the ground. The reason why the tap water is not completely suitable for watering the plants is mainly the presence of limestone in it; unfortunately in most of Italy, the water from the aqueducts is very hard. This fact makes it unsuitable for watering those plants that do not like the presence of many mineral salts (and especially calcium) in the soil, such as acidophiles, which prefer acid soils, with bio-available iron; unfortunately calcium and iron work as antagonists, and in a soil with a lot of calcium, acidophilic plants are not able to absorb iron. Even some very delicate plants should never be watered with tap water, such as some orchids, and especially carnivorous plants, which are acidophilic and even delicate.
That said, unfortunately at home we are forced to water with tap water, especially if we have many plants; in general, for the most common plants grown in the apartment or in the garden, this water is fine, and does not create any kind of problem. As for the acidophilic plants, it would be enough to prepare the watering can the night before, and wait for the limestone to settle; when we go to water we will have a water with a little less limestone, better for our plants. In addition to precipitating the limestone, preparing the water the day before also allows us to water the plants with a liquid at room temperature; in fact, one of the things that plants of tap water less like, especially in the height of summer, is that it has a temperature often many degrees different from the ambient temperature, and therefore causes a thermal shock to the roots. Clear, it depends on how much water we supply, from the season in which we are, to the size of the vessels. Prepare the water and let it settle for about twelve hours, bring it to room temperature; I understand that this operation is easily practicable if we possess a single potted azalea; when instead we have the terrace covered with various flowers, and the garden with annuals and shrubs, preparing the water the day before becomes an impractical undertaking.