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Watering Your Plants With Sparkling Water
Watering your plants with sparkling water is likely to cause rapid plant growth. This Gardening in Canada article looks at the benefit of using sparkling water with your plants. This will again be based on science and will include tips to make this hack that much better.
If you are new to this blog my name is Ashley and I am a soil scientist. I am located in a Canadian Zone 3 and a USDA Zone 4. I write articles, make YouTube videos, Instagram posts all designed for Canadians and Cold Climate gardeners using science-based methods. If you are looking for anything specific be sure to let me know in the comments down below.
The research done on this topic was done by the University of Colorado located in boulder. The conclusion of the study showed that there was a 2x increase in plant growth and the foliage appeared to be greener in colour. Let’s break down why this happened in the colorado study.
Club soda or carbonated water contains the macronutrients carbon, oxygen, hydrogen, phosphorous, potassium, sulphur, and sodium that are essential for healthy plant growth. This nutrient is dissolved in solution resulting in immediate bioavailability to the plants.
Whenever we have fertilizers, organic or otherwise we have to wait for the nutrients to become bioavailable to the plant. This is most commonly done via microbes within the soil. Only after the microbes are done their breakdown process are the nutrients available to the plant. This is because the nutrient has to be water-soluble in order for the plant to use it.
With carbonated water, we skip this step and immediately have available nutrients for the plant.
The CO2 Factor
The most obvious question about using sparkling water on plants is whether or not CO2 helps the plant. Carbon is a crucial part of photosynthesis and therefore the growth of a plant. The higher levels of carbon allow the plants to grow faster and larger in size within a growing season.
In outdoor settings plants watered with sparkling water have a higher tolerance to drought. This drought tolerance is likely due to the higher levels of CO2 the plant is able to capture through the roots. This means the plant doesn’t need to open its stoma to allow CO2 gas in for the process of photosynthesis. This decreases evaporation so the plant conserves more water and needs less
Soil pH & Carbonated Water
The soil pH is what determines how available plant nutrients are to the plant. In simple terms, if the pH is not at an ideal level the nutrients will stay stuck to the soil like glue. Sparkling water is able to potentially decrease the soil pH temporarily until the CO2 is gassed off. This means you have a temporary period of time where the plant has nutrients that are heavily available due to the pH change. The pH of sparkling water is typically 4.5 which is much lower than your average potting soil.
For more on soil pH and plants check out the video I made on how to make pH-neutral potting soil.
How to water plants using sparkling water?
- Use sparkling water in place of your normal water and add your fertilizer like you normally would.
- Place the sparkling water on the counter, allowing it to warm up to room temperature. Coldwater can shock the plants and the soil microbes.
- Repeat for the months to come
Hope you enjoyed learning about using sparkling water with your plants. If you want to learn more about different types of water and plants check out the video below. Be sure to let me know in the comments if you have any tips or tricks for watering plants.