When practising gardening, you need to think about the different inputs your plants require to grow healthy and thrive. One of the inputs is water because it is readily available. But it depends where you get it from.
And, it is very challenging nowadays to get pure water from your potted plants. Tap water contains a variety of unwanted contaminants. Please read this article and understand the impact of distilled water for plants and how you can make your own if the need arises.
Table of Contents
- What is Distilled Water?
- Watering Plants with Condensed Water
- How Distilled Water Affects Plant Growth?
- Effects of Distilled Water on Hydroponics
- Is Distilled Water Good for Plants?
- How to Make Distilled Water
- 3 Best Water Distillers
What is Distilled Water?
It is a special kind of purified water achieved through a distillation process that involves boiling and condensing the vapours. The distillation process combines both condensation and evaporation to remove inorganic and chemical components from the liquid mixture.
Naturally, you can purify all liquid substances through vaporization at a specific temperature, and distillation exploits these facts but at different temperature levels. In nature, water is a universal solvent; hence it does not exist in its purest form. Therefore, through distillation, you can remove all the impurities and soluble substances.
The liquid you get through the distillation process is known as distilled water, which is very pure and free of harmful chemical substances. Most people believe it is suitable for plants.
Watering Plants with Condensed Water
As a gardener, you understand the importance of watering your plants with distilled water because it is free of minerals and chemicals. This type is helpful in all kinds of indoor plants. Nevertheless, distilled water for plants is not inevitably great compared to others.
The liquid contains harmful chemicals, various pollutants, and other toxic substances due to rampant pollution. Natural water also contains refined minerals, and most of them are beneficial to plants. Therefore, pollution is the main reason most gardeners filter it for plant use.
However, outdoor plants might use refined liquid if the natural water is extremely polluted. But regular plants have a defence mechanism for fighting impurities. Hence, they don’t need purified water for growth.
The rain is very useful in cleaning the soil impurities collected from contamination. In hydroponic or greenhouse gardening, substantial contaminants accumulation can harm the plant growth and eventually get low yield. Therefore, using distilled water for plant growth is very beneficial, especially for their health.
How Distilled Water Affects Plant Growth?
Purified water is a soft liquid made through the elimination of mineral deposits and chemicals. Most gardeners use tap water and find it useful for their plants. Plants watered using condensed liquid grow much faster and strong. They also produce a lot of leaves and grow more energetically.
You can use refined water in the following instances: first is using it for indoor greenhouse farming and hydroponics. These two instances are incredibly controlled and contained a plant-growing environment. You must know that rainwater is insignificant here.
If you use contaminated or unsafe liquid substance, it can result in severe implications. For instance, in the greenhouse, the soil surrounding the roots starts to gather impurities. Greenhouses are used for nursing-sensitive and young plants such as orchids.
The impurities result in severe consequences on the greenhouse crops, limiting their growth and consequently their yields. Therefore, with this at the back of your mind, you should use condensed liquescent in your greenhouse.
Effects of Distilled Water on Hydroponics
Water plays a fundamental role in the absence of the soil in hydroponics, which means that any impurities can cause a severe impact on the plant growth system. Chemicals and minerals can accumulate around the plant roots if there is no soil to filter out the contaminants.
It is considered the only channel for delivering rich nutrients to the roots. It’s quality and pH level can affect how the nutrients are delivered to the plant roots. So your tap water has poor quality or high pH, it can destroy the plant growth system.
Impurities and contaminated minerals can collect around the plant roots and make them starve due to a lack of adequate nutrients. If this happens to your hydroponic farming, then the best solution is to use distilled water for plants.
Using purified liquid synergizes perfectly with the hydroponic concept. It gives comprehensive control over all plant inputs such as nutrients. You can also control what is supplied to your hydroponic plants.
Is Distilled Water Good for Plants?
Condensed liquid has many benefits for your plants, such as providing an impurity-free source of watering your plants that prevents toxic build-up. It reduces the number of chemicals and metals found in tap water. Hence, providing a clean and purified liquid that cannot harm your plants.
Plants require an adequate amount of minerals for growth, most of which are contained in the tap water. Nevertheless, excess chlorine and other additives can have severe harm to your sensitive plants.
The main reason for distillation is to evaporate the chemicals. Unluckily, excess nutrients cannot evaporate. Another option of watering your plants is to use melted snow. The liquid is free of chemicals, and it is natural too.
Distillation of water is done through boiling and then condensing the vapour. Harmful chemicals, heavy metals, and other insignificant impurities are removed during this process. The liquid collected is pure and free of other contaminants such as bacteria and some living organisms.
Condensed vapour has a neutral level of pH and is suitable for constant watering of garden plants. And watering your plants with distilled water prevents toxic build-up; therefore, it is ideal for plants. Using it alone is not a guarantee that your plants can thrive. You need to consider some factors, too, such as:
Check your water’s pH level regularly when watering if it is within the optimal range. This is important to ensure that your nutrient mixture is highly effective. The ideal range is between 5.8 and 6 for your plants to draw essential plant nutrients.
Purified liquid has a pH level of 7, which is always neutral. Nevertheless, most plants like lower levels, most specifically if you consider the nutrient lockout idea. Pure water is highly corrosive and can react with carbon dioxide to form weak acids that can reduce the level to almost 6.
Mineral or Nutrient Level
If you practice hydroponic farming, your crops might have calcium and magnesium deficiency when using condensed vapour. This is because the main components of hard water are magnesium and calcium. Therefore, if you are watering your plants with condensed vapour, then you have to remove them.
Ordinary water contains a significant amount of magnesium and calcium. The alkaline nutrients assist in raising the level of pH. So if you distill fresh tap water, you reduce the amount of these inorganics to almost zero.
The nutrients of hydroponic mixes are perfectly balanced to function in water that contains a low amount of calcium and magnesium. If you are using pure water, the nutrient mix doesn’t have optimal pH levels or mineral balance.
The highly effective mechanism to solve this situation is adding magnesium and calcium supplements (Cal-Mag) into pure liquid. You should consider using the following if you’re using purified water:
- Check the pH levels.
- Add the correct amount of Cal-Mag.
- Check the pH level once more.
- Add the Cal-Mag if the pH levels are between 5.8 and 6.4 for optimum results.
How to Make Distilled Water
It is costly to buy purified liquid from any local store for your plants. There are several helpful guides about the distillation process. The basic process of condensing vapor is easy and straightforward. Just follow the steps below to make your own pure water:
- Take a stainless steel pot that can hold 4-5 gallons of water. It must have a lid cover.
- Fill the pot half full with tap or ordinary water.
- Take a glass bowl that is heatproof on a baking rack and place it into the pot. The stand ensures that the bowl underneath does not touch the steel pot.
- Then cover the pot with the lid and place it in ice.
- Boil the liquid for about 45 minutes as you replace the ice several times.
- The evaporated liquid in the pan hits the lid, and the ice-cooled surface condenses the vapour and converts it back to the water.
- The liquid drops into the glass bowl as distilled water.
3 Best Water Distillers
A distiller is a purification system that distorts water to steam and condenses it by removing the impurities and providing fresh and pure liquid. There are several distillers available in the market. We have highlighted the 3 best distillers. But you can buy one that suits your needs.
1. Waterwise (400) Water Distiller
It is made of a stainless steel condenser, distilled, and glass carafe with an adjustable lid. It can produce 1 gallon in 4 hours, so in 24hours, it can give you about 6 gallons of water. It collects contaminants and impurities in the boiling chamber.
The sprout has a carbon filter attached to it that should be replaced after collecting about 8 gallons. It shuts off after producing 1 gallon hence preventing the distiller from overheating. This is the best water distiller for your plants.
2. Best-in-Class Stainless Steel Distiller
It is made with strong stainless steel, and the plastics components are built with food-grade material. It releases distilled water through the nozzle into the container. The nozzle is designed to prevent water from touching the metal or plastic components. It can distill about one gallon of water into the tank.
The carafe is made of glass, and it has a large opening for effective cleaning. It also has an ergonomic design for quick manipulation. This water distiller offers the best value for your money.
3. COZ Water Distiller
COZ distiller can produce 1.5 gallons of pure water in about 6 hours. This kind of speed cannot be witnessed in other water distillers. The water inside this distiller can hit a temperature of over 3000 degrees.
It is made of strong stainless steel that is easy to clean. It produces grease but cannot get into purified liquid. It uses 750-watt of heat and comes with a charcoal filter. It has a warranty of one year.
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It is not advisable to water your plants using condensed liquid regularly, but only once in a while because it lacks some minerals. Therefore, it is also ideal for watering your plants using the right amount of distilled water for healthy plant growth.