Grey water systems

Grey water recycling is not a new phenomenon and has been in use in the United States and Australia for many years.

Grey water is wastewater generated from domestic activities such as dish washing, laundry and bathing. Grey water comprises 50-80% of residential wastewater generated from all of the house's sanitation equipment except for the toilets. Grey water gets its name from its cloudy appearance and from its status as being neither fresh (white water from groundwater or potable water), nor polluted (sewage).

By re-using grey water in a responsible manner, the demand for potable water can be dramatically reduced. It is possible that up to 50% of all household potable water can be used for garden irrigation purposes. By utilizing grey water to irrigate our gardens, we can effortlessly do our bit and save enormous amounts of potable water.

Most household grey water contains compounds that may be useful to your garden. Compounds in grey water include nitrate and phosphates which are, in most cases, beneficial to plants in small doses. These are compounds that are also found in most garden fertilisers. There are, however, a few exceptions: Plants that are found naturally in the wild are intolerant of phosphate and therefore care must be taken to avoid over-watering with grey water. We would never the less recommend to use biodynamic household and body products (Bloublommetjieskloof products) instead, as these are absolutely harmless – the plant extracts even fertilise your garden.

Grey water is generally alkaline and this must be considered when watering acid loving plants. Edible plants or herbs should not be watered with grey water (except it biodynamic products have been used) within two weeks of harvesting and should be washed carefully before consumption.

If required, your garden centre or nursery will be able to assist and provide further information on the use of grey water on your plants.

Please use drain cleaners, harsh chemicals, bleaches and household detergents sparingly in order to limit the negative effect on the garden. (In the event that excessive amounts of chemicals are used, it is recommended that one temporarily diverts the waste water to the main sewage system).

As regular soaps and detergents contain high levels of sodium, it is recommended that the use of biodegradable and soap-free cleaners be used. The Bloublommetjieskloof product range is highly recommended as it does not cause any harm to outdoor plants, if used responsibly.