Houseplants forum: Remember Water, the most important ingredient for successful plants

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Name: 'CareBear'

Sempervivums Hostas Dog Lover Irises Amaryllis Cactus and Succulents
Region: Pennsylvania
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Stush2019
Nov 17, 2011 12:46 PM CST
I think water is mostly overlooked for keeping plants at their top shape. Most cities use chlorine and chloramines to water to kill bacteria and fungus. This stuff also kills your plants. Aged water helps with the chlorine but not the new chloramines some are now using. I read about potting soil mixes for different plants, light demands, air temperatures but nobody talks about water. Any fast draining soil mix can support plant health as long as the main ingredient 'Water' is considered. Warm (not hot) water that's been aged for a week or so is great, but using old fish tank water (If you have tropical fish) is probably the best. In the summer months I use a 32 gallon garbage can with holes in bottom sitting on top of it's lid. inside of the can I collect my grass clippings, leaves and other plant scraps (weeds) into this. When it rains the water filters thru and collects in bottom lid tray. This I pour into a watering can and use for all my plants. It's called compost tea. Also I pour fresh water on the top and collect at the bottom when there's no rain. Works great.
Name: Angie Singson Boucher
Ottawa City Ontario Canada (Zone 5a)
Live, Love, Climb!
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angelina2600
Dec 4, 2011 6:05 PM CST
Thanks for the tip. I will clean my fish tank and use the water to water my plants.

Also note that over watering is no. 1 killer of houseplant, aside from low houselight.
The human animal is a beautiful and terrible creature.
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Name: Alan
Chandler, AZ; 85225 (Zone 9b)
Sunset Zone 13
Charter ATP Member Region: Southwest Gardening Organic Gardener Native Plants and Wildflowers Cottage Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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GardenGuyAZ
Dec 5, 2011 9:51 AM CST
Stush2019 said:I think water is mostly overlooked for keeping plants at their top shape. Most cities use chlorine and chloramines to water to kill bacteria and fungus. This stuff also kills your plants. Aged water helps with the chlorine but not the new chloramines some are now using. I read about potting soil mixes for different plants, light demands, air temperatures but nobody talks about water. Any fast draining soil mix can support plant health as long as the main ingredient 'Water' is considered. Warm (not hot) water that's been aged for a week or so is great, but using old fish tank water (If you have tropical fish) is probably the best. In the summer months I use a 32 gallon garbage can with holes in bottom sitting on top of it's lid. inside of the can I collect my grass clippings, leaves and other plant scraps (weeds) into this. When it rains the water filters thru and collects in bottom lid tray. This I pour into a watering can and use for all my plants. It's called compost tea. Also I pour fresh water on the top and collect at the bottom when there's no rain. Works great.


Slush, would love to see a picture of that setup, please :)

























Name: 'CareBear'

Sempervivums Hostas Dog Lover Irises Amaryllis Cactus and Succulents
Region: Pennsylvania
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Stush2019
Dec 5, 2011 5:11 PM CST
Thanks, I was beginning to think nobody takes there water seriously. Fish tank water is the best for all plants but the compost tea should only be used outdoors. It smells. Same could be said of the stuff from gardens alive. I'll post a picture and explain further on my compost tea maker in the spring when I set it up again.
Stush
Name: Sheryl
Hot, hot, hot, Feenix, AZ (Zone 9b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Southwest Gardening Keeps Horses Dog Lover Cat Lover Permaculture
Butterflies Birds Cottage Gardener Herbs I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Irises
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sheryl
Dec 5, 2011 8:37 PM CST
LOL- Alan kinda *has* to take his water seriously.
In the end, only kindness matters.

Science is not the answer, it is the question.


Name: Alan
Chandler, AZ; 85225 (Zone 9b)
Sunset Zone 13
Charter ATP Member Region: Southwest Gardening Organic Gardener Native Plants and Wildflowers Cottage Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Plumerias Plant and/or Seed Trader Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Butterflies Bulbs Container Gardener
GardenGuyAZ
Dec 6, 2011 6:50 AM CST
Boy...isn't that the truth!! Thumbs up

























Name: Sheryl
Hot, hot, hot, Feenix, AZ (Zone 9b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Southwest Gardening Keeps Horses Dog Lover Cat Lover Permaculture
Butterflies Birds Cottage Gardener Herbs I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Irises
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sheryl
Dec 6, 2011 9:53 AM CST
I speak not with fork-ed tongue.... lol.
In the end, only kindness matters.

Science is not the answer, it is the question.


Name: Cinda
Indiana Zone 5b
Dances with Dirt
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gardengus
Dec 6, 2011 8:19 PM CST
I have used fish tank water for years and totally agree it is the most natural and best . You don't have to wait till you clean the tank just dip and replace the water . It is also good for the fish to have fresh water. Of course I have well water so it is easy to ''just replace'', the tank water.
Collecting rain water is a great idea too.
Keep believing ,hoping,and loving
all else is just existing.
Name: Lee Anne Stark
Brockville, Ontario, Canada (Zone 5a)
Perpetually happy!
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threegardeners
Dec 6, 2011 8:26 PM CST

Moderator

I agree I also use water out of the aquarium. It saves having to do the 1/3rd change every few months because I'm constantly dipping out of it for plants...although, with 150+ house plants I make a pretty good dent in it every week Rolling on the floor laughing . Also have well water so re-filling is no problem here either.
Name: 'CareBear'

Sempervivums Hostas Dog Lover Irises Amaryllis Cactus and Succulents
Region: Pennsylvania
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Stush2019
Dec 7, 2011 3:05 PM CST
Cinda,
The picture you post is what?? You may have the very best fertilizer know to plants. Did you know that alfalfa is a super plant hormone? What eats alfalfa poops out most of the hormone. Makes it just great for plants.
A hosta grower once told me a secret. He used alfalfa meal 50/50 mix then planted his hosta on top. He said it gave him 2 years growth in one year. I told him not to tell me secrets no more, that I have a big mouth. I did this myself and saw remarkable growth but I worried that moles or mice might dig in to get to the alfalfa meal. Rabbit manure removes this worry. Don't know anyone with rabbits do you?? Horse manure has too much other stuff besides alfalfa meal in it. But after properly composted for a year or so is great also.
Just through I mention this.
Stush
Name: Lee Anne Stark
Brockville, Ontario, Canada (Zone 5a)
Perpetually happy!
Forum moderator Tip Photographer I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Critters Allowed Cottage Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Keeps Goats Keeper of Poultry Frogs and Toads Charter ATP Member Region: Canadian
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threegardeners
Dec 7, 2011 7:05 PM CST

Moderator

Cinda's creature is a Chinchilla Lovey dubby

I know a guy who has rabbits and I gather the stuff every time he cleans them and put it straight into the gardens. The gardens love it!!
Name: Cinda
Indiana Zone 5b
Dances with Dirt
Native Plants and Wildflowers Critters Allowed Garden Procrastinator Herbs Vegetable Grower Plant Identifier
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gardengus
Dec 7, 2011 7:07 PM CST
My avatar is Phoebe , she is a chinchilla , and yes she eats mostly pellets like a rabbit. I use her leavings in my houseplants instead of chemical fertilizer.
For the outside gardens I use the goat (nannyberries) Smiling
No lack of natural fertilizer here I also have a horse
Keep believing ,hoping,and loving
all else is just existing.
Name: Cinda
Indiana Zone 5b
Dances with Dirt
Native Plants and Wildflowers Critters Allowed Garden Procrastinator Herbs Vegetable Grower Plant Identifier
Organic Gardener Keeps Goats Garden Photography Cottage Gardener Composter Houseplants
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gardengus
Dec 7, 2011 7:18 PM CST
*Blush* Cross posted
Keep believing ,hoping,and loving
all else is just existing.
Name: Lee Anne Stark
Brockville, Ontario, Canada (Zone 5a)
Perpetually happy!
Forum moderator Tip Photographer I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Critters Allowed Cottage Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Keeps Goats Keeper of Poultry Frogs and Toads Charter ATP Member Region: Canadian
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threegardeners
Dec 7, 2011 7:22 PM CST

Moderator

make a wish!!
Name: Cinda
Indiana Zone 5b
Dances with Dirt
Native Plants and Wildflowers Critters Allowed Garden Procrastinator Herbs Vegetable Grower Plant Identifier
Organic Gardener Keeps Goats Garden Photography Cottage Gardener Composter Houseplants
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gardengus
Dec 7, 2011 7:58 PM CST
Rolling my eyes. how about early spring?
Keep believing ,hoping,and loving
all else is just existing.
Name: Lee Anne Stark
Brockville, Ontario, Canada (Zone 5a)
Perpetually happy!
Forum moderator Tip Photographer I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Critters Allowed Cottage Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Keeps Goats Keeper of Poultry Frogs and Toads Charter ATP Member Region: Canadian
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threegardeners
Dec 7, 2011 8:01 PM CST

Moderator

Thumbs up
Name: Renée
Northern KY
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: Kentucky Sempervivums Cat Lover Dog Lover
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KyWoods
Dec 7, 2011 8:31 PM CST
"nannyberries" Rolling on the floor laughing
I use aquarium water sometimes, and sometimes I use the drops that are supposed to remove chlorine/chloramines from water in my tap water.
Name: 'CareBear'

Sempervivums Hostas Dog Lover Irises Amaryllis Cactus and Succulents
Region: Pennsylvania
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Stush2019
Dec 7, 2011 8:35 PM CST
Cinda,
I am so jealous of you. You lucky Girl. How I wish I had the room and space to do what you do.
Stush
Name: Sheryl
Hot, hot, hot, Feenix, AZ (Zone 9b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Southwest Gardening Keeps Horses Dog Lover Cat Lover Permaculture
Butterflies Birds Cottage Gardener Herbs I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Irises
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sheryl
Dec 7, 2011 8:44 PM CST
Trust me, being chief poop-scooper has it's downsides, too. I also have horses, but I skip the middle step in the gardens and soak alfalfa cubes and add them to new plantings. Too many... uh.... mare-y berries....
In the end, only kindness matters.

Science is not the answer, it is the question.


Name: 'CareBear'

Sempervivums Hostas Dog Lover Irises Amaryllis Cactus and Succulents
Region: Pennsylvania
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Stush2019
Dec 9, 2011 3:50 PM CST
Sheryl,
I feel your pain. Nice to wish and another to do. In my childhood I too was chief pooper-scooper every time I visit my uncle's farm. He had 2 cows. I always took home a bag of old composted manure with me. Memories are better than reality. We would fill a old dog food bag called 'Chunks of Joy'. After my mother would always laugh at the thought.
Stush

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