Grey Water For The Garden

May 31, 2014 in Organic Gardening by Christine

Grey Water – Using Grey Water In The Garden

Grey Water How to Recycle and Reuse wastewaterGrey water is in between fresh clear water which is clean and black water which is extremely dirty. In residential areas, grey water comes from such things as washing dishes, laundry and bathing. It mostly comprises of high concentration of fats, grease, oils and also cleaning liquids.

Normally, an average home can reduce their water consumption by around 30% by re-using grey water on their garden. However, the figures may vary from household to household regarding on the type or size of the house and the wastage of water. A regular household on a suburban block is estimated to use about 20,000 gallons of water on gardens and lawns. This means that the house could save around 50,000 litres of drinking water per year.

If you live in the county you will know and learn that grey water can be reused safely in the garden. Did you realise from time to time grey water is released into the rivers? And people swim there! People that live in the country cannot be fussy they have to make do with their resources, which is not turning on a tap and expecting it to never run out. Remember water is a precious gift and here in Australia we need to preserve the drinking water and look after it and use it wisely. It is best to use the grey water where ever we can.

Is Grey Water good for your garden?

Grey water that is used water, from the bathroom and laundry, 60% of it can be re-used. However, this does not include water from the toilet or kitchen which is referred to as black water. This is actually considered as free water that could save a lot of hundreds of dollars. There are quite a few of inexpensive ways that this could be applied such as the use of gravity feeding hose from the washing machine or also the use of bucketing water from the house. There is also the costly way of using waste grey water treatment systems.

There are new products in the market that have made the recycling of this water easier and cheaper. These products are able to accept water from both the bathroom and laundry, where they automatically pump the water to the garden. They pump themselves out throughout the 24 hour period to meet the requirements of health and environment authorities.
There are a few major key points that we need to note when you use grey water in order to receive the best results and avoid any complications. Here is how you can use grey water for your garden-

  • Hughie removable sink collects wasted grey waterOne should NOT use grey water near fruit or vegetables, it may contain bacteria and it wouldn’t be safe for human consumption.
  • Use grey water to irrigate only on the subsurface if possible.
  • Use a less aggressive detergent that does not contain hazardous chemical ingredients, lets face it, its bad for the environment anyway.
  • Be careful not to let the grey-water trickle into your neighbours property.
  • Grey water is alkaline, so it is important that you do not drown acid-loving plants in it.
  • It is important you stay actively involved in the use and upkeep of your equipment.
  • Don’t store waste water otherwise it will have a stinky smell.
  • Finally, try not to use grey water containing lint and hair with fine-pore soaker hoses.

The usage of grey water on your garden can definitely help you save money as well as the environment. Many properties away from towns and cities do not have the luxury of town water running past their front door. So by using grey water may be the only means of being able to have a home garden. You just have to be wary of – What is in your grey water and what you use your grey water for.

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