“I was wondering what’s a cheap and effective way for the home organic grower to remove chlorine and, more importantly, chloramine without using expensive reverse osmosis filters. Can you recommend a product that is inexpensive and effective at making water safe for all the organic goodies we work so hard to cultivate?” Question from Stephen of Elizabethtown, Kentucky.
Answer: There are several inexpensive solutions that can help you. Here are three of the best, easiest, and cheapest solutions for water dechlorination for organic growers like you.
Chlorine is a gas that evaporates from irrigation water over a short period of time. To encourage evaporation, irrigation water must be exposed to the air. The more open-air coverage, the faster the evaporation. Ultraviolet rays from sunlight and added aeration will help hasten the process. I recommend using a broad, open tub covering with a screen (to keep insects and animals out) that is kept in the open air and sun for irrigation water. A small pond aerator with also hasten the process. These water sources can also collect rainwater.
Chlorine evaporation time depends on the concentration. In general, it takes chlorine a few days for the standard concentration to evaporate from 10 gallons of standing water. I suggest investing in a small chlorine tester to ensure your water is chlorine-free before irrigating.
Carbon Filtration for Chloramine
Chloramine is a little tougher to remove from water. The easiest method is via carbon filtration. For small businesses, there are small, reasonably priced, carbon filtration systems that will remove sediment, chlorine, and chloramine from water. Here are some options.
Rain Water Collection
Water collection is an age-old way of gathering fresh, chlorine-free water for growing. Whether you choose to fill rain barrels or cisterns, rainwater is free to collect and (mostly) chemical-free. Of course. (Here is an article that covers some methods of rainwater collection.)
I hope that these tips help!
Happy organic gardening,
Black Gold Horticulturist