Filtered is ok if it's through a reverse osmosis system. Boiled is a definite no-no. Spring water is probably too high in minerals that are hrmful to CP"s. I just bought a 5 stage RO system for around 赀 on eBay because I got tired of buying distilled water and we're in a little drought here so rain water is scarce.
I had a normal Vft which i gave normal tap water for 1 year, and i still have it. Since i joined these forums, i am now using rain water. I now have a Royal Red and South West Giant, so i don't want them to die on me. Although i now know how bad tap water is for Vft's, I think my tap water is not as bad as other places. I live in Wales (UK) and i get 'soft' water here. Is this water ok to use ? If not I will be getting a reverse osmosis system, since i hate collecting rain water, i have about 5 buckets out permanently.
Anyone know a good place to buy a RO system in the UK ??
How about boiling water, filtering it, then boiling it again ? Would this be ok to use on a regular basis ? (I use rain water at the moment, but it is very tedious putting buckets out every time it rains).
Dave, you could try using water from a river or stream. There is a risk involved if your bedrock is very alkaline, or the water isn't very clean, but I've always used water from the stream at the bottom of my garden. You could make a trip to a river, fill up some bottles and test it on one of your plants.
Getting the right water is the most common headache when growing CP especially when we get long dry spells in the UK.
Looking at B&Q the other day, they sell good quality water butts and rainwater diverters for quite low prices. That way all the plants (not just CPS) will benefit. Not only that, rainwater is acidic due to cabon dioxide content picked up which makes it really a weak carbolic acid solution...great for CP with a pH of 5.5!
The amount of hassle, worry etc you would save will far outweight the outlay in the long run....
Ask Richard UK what lengths I have gone to make sure my collection has enough rainwater!
Thanks for the advice. So its either a water butt or water from my local river. Any method to determine whether the river water is acidic ? And is it possible that river water could contain lime also ?
With River water, a lot depends on where you live. If you are 'lucky' enough to live in an area say in Dartmoor, Lake district where you KNOW the water is not going to be contaminated with agricultural run off such as fertilizers etc or that the river does not originate or cross limestone, then you will be safe.
Personally, I would not risk it with river water. Your safest cheapest bet in the long run is a water butt, and depending on how many plants you have, I calculate with 3 to 4 litres per plant water storage to outlive a 6 week dry spell which we can and do get in the UK. To give you an idea, I have 10,000 litres water storage as my collection is extremely valuable.
Thanks for the warning about river water. Come to think of it there are lots of fields where the farmer could be using fertilizers, plus i'm pretty sure the river passes over areas of limestone. There goes that idea. A relative of mine does have a large store of rainwater, which has run off a roof into a water butt. The water is not that clean, but does not stink either, is this ok to use ?