How Long Can You Store Rainwater For Plants
While you’re probably familiar with the rainwater vs. tap water debate, you may not know how long stored rainwater lasts before it becomes unusable or even dangerous for your plants.
It is widely known that rainwater is the best for your plants because it is free of chlorine and other chemicals.
It is widely known that rainwater is the best for your plants because it is free of chlorine and other chemicals. Rainwater can be collected in a large tank in the backyard, or you can use a reservoir that collects rain from gutters. The water will take 24 hours to become safe for plants, but this is easily done by letting it sit in an open container overnight. If you do not have enough room on your property to store tanks or reservoirs, then you will have to buy them from a local supplier.
If you are interested in learning more about using rainwater for your garden, there are many resources available online and in books at bookstores around town!
The environmental benefits of collecting water from the sky instead of from the hose are obvious.
You probably already know that rainwater is better for your plants than tap water. You can use it to water all of your outdoor plants, and you’ll need less fertilizer and pesticides, too.
When you collect rainfall for irrigation purposes, though, there are other benefits besides saving money on your monthly water bill. Collecting rainwater has an impact on the environment in several ways:
- It reduces pollution by reducing the amount of pollutants entering storm drains;
- It reduces erosion from runoff caused by heavy rains; and
- It helps prevent flooding because it keeps soil moist after a downpour instead of letting it dry out quickly as would happen if you were using a sprinkler system
Some plants are more sensitive to these chemicals than others, so if your plant collection includes delicate species, you may want to store rainwater anyway.
You may have noticed that some plants are more sensitive to these chemicals than others. For example, ferns and orchids have been known to die from chlorine in tap water, but most other plants don’t seem bothered by it. A good rule of thumb is that if your plant collection includes delicate species like ferns and orchids, you may want to store rainwater anyway. However, if your garden primarily contains drought-tolerant plants that are comfortable living in dry conditions (such as cacti), then you could probably skip the whole rainwater storage process without hurting any of them too much.
Before you start filling up your barrels and buckets, though, you need to know how long you can keep rainwater before using it on your plants.
There is no hard-and-fast rule for how long you can store rainwater, but there are a few factors to consider.
- How much you collect: The more water you collect and store, the longer it will last. If you have an average of three inches of rainfall per month, your barrel or bucket can hold about 11 gallons of water before needing to be emptied. If you only get one inch per month, that’s still just over three gallons of storage capacity.
- What container you’re using: You’ll have better results if your container is large enough to hold all of your collected rainwater at once; otherwise, evaporation will occur faster than usual. This means that I would recommend barrels instead of buckets if possible—a 55-gallon barrel holds 256 gallons (about 860 liters) while a 5-gallon bucket holds 20+ gallons (76+ liters). Keep in mind that plastic doesn’t retain heat as well as metal does—metal also has less risk of leaching chemicals into your drinking water—so make sure to use stainless steel or food-grade plastic buckets/barrels if possible!
Plants like rainwater, but only when it’s fresh.
Rainwater is the best water for plants, but only when it’s fresh.
If you’ve ever had a plant die because of too much chlorine in your tap water, then you know why rainwater is preferable to tap. Rainwater doesn’t have any chemicals like chlorine added to it, so it’s more pure and better for your plants’ health than tap. If you’re concerned about making sure the rainwater is free from chemicals such as pesticides or herbicides, ask your neighbors if they use those things on their lawns or gardens; then make sure not to collect from downwind of them (a yard tainted with pesticides will send those toxins into the air).
There’s no need to store rainwater for long periods of time—if you’re going away for an extended period of time or know that there won’t be any precipitation in your area while away, fill up some containers with clean rainwater and keep them stored indoors until needed. If there isn’t enough rainfall during this time frame (or if none at all), don’t worry: The pH level should remain stable unless there are extreme changes in temperature over long periods; otherwise, just add some common household vinegar (not apple cider vinegar) to adjust its acidity levels back into normal range after returning home!
If you’re planning to use rainwater for your plants, don’t wait too long. The longer you store it, the more likely it will be contaminated with chlorine and other chemicals. You also don’t want your plants to get sick from drinking dirty water! If they do get sick, they might stop growing or even die. So make sure that when collecting rainwater for reuse as gardening supplies, freshness is key!