Going gray(water) the safe way with Good Earth Plants

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Rainwater Harvesting 1In a previous blog post, Good Earth Plant Company shared some of our best tips on how to conserve water while keeping your plants healthy. Landscape irrigation has the highest use of water in the average household. Watering your plants efficiently is a great start to reach the goal to reduce our water use by 20% by 2020. However, this alone is not enough.

Good Earth Plants can help you take the next step to effectively conserve water by using gray water systems. Gray water systems are used to recycle water already used once in your shower and laundry water for the purpose of watering your garden.

Once you’ve decided to go gray, a common question first asked when it comes to these systems is “What kind of soap can I use that won’t harm my plants?”

According to the San Diego Sustainable Institute, there are three main substances you want to minimize using to produce safe gray water:

  • Salt or Sodium ( including sulfates and sodium hydroxide)
  • Chlorine
  • Boron or Borax

For washing machines:

  • Use liquid instead of powder detergents (they have less salts).
  • When it comes to bleach, use hydrogen peroxide instead of chlorine bleach.
  • San Diego Sustainable Institute recommends the brands Oasis and Ecos.
There are many excellent sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner choices from most major brands.

There are many excellent sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner choices from most major brands.

For showers:

  • Use liquid soap instead of a bar (there is less salt in liquid soaps).
  • For shampoo and conditioner, use sulfate free brands. Popular brands such as Redken and L’Oreal Paris offer sulfate free options. Find more recommendations at this link.
  • San Diego Sustainable Institute recommends the brands Oasis dish soap or Dr. Bronner’s soap.

You can find these recommended products available for purchase on Vitacost.com and Amazon.com, or similar products in your local Home Depot, Lowe’s or Dixieline stores.

With these tips, you can enjoy a successful gray water system that will keep your plants and this planet safe. The Environmental Protection Agency recently made it easier to use your own do-it-yourself gray water system at home as long as it meets standard heath regulations.

Not sure how to set up a gray water system? Good Earth Plants can install one for you! If you have further questions about gray water systems and installation, call Good Earth Plants at 858-576-9300.