Chlorine=Bad for Plants

Virtually every municipal water treatment plant in the United States (and most other countries) uses chlorine to sanitize water. This is a great thing for us human beings and our pets and livestock in general.  Chlorine kills bacteria and other microorganisms that pose a risk to our health.  However, this is not so great for plants and fungi that also need water.  While the chlorine won’t kill plants directly, it does kill as noted, bacteria and microorganisms that are necessary and beneficial to plant health.  Anyone who grows household plants, gardens, or flower beds should take steps to minimize the application of chlorinated water to their living fauna.

  • The easiest and most economical step is to let water sit out in an open container (a bowl or bucket with a large surface area) for more than 24 hours. Preferably, this open container should be kept at least a room temperature of 70 degrees F or warmer.
  • If you don’t want to wait that long, you can boil water for 15 minutes or so and let it cool back to room temperature prior to use.
  • Another way is to collect rain water.
  • If you have access to an untreated water well of course that works.
  • You could also buy distilled water (bottled drinking water still usually contains chlorine sealed in the container with the water).
  • Active carbon filters work too.
  • Also, there is a product called Campden tablets (potassium metabisulfite) that is available to remove chlorine from water.

Following one of these methods will provide for water that will not destroy the natural biology of the symbiotic relationship of plants and microbes that exists in the soil and leaf surfaces of your plant.

If you would like to take even greater measures to provide a great environment for your plant to grow in. You can amend the soil with compost and water with compost tea. These are more than just nutrition for your plant.  They are delivery systems that pave the way for your plants to effectively utilize even more nutrition than just the composted material provides.  Composted material also provides a bio-film that protects plants from diseases.

You can make your own composted materials, or you can buy from

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