Forum home The potting shed

Grey Water

I have heard that it is ok to use bath water and washing machine rinsing water in the garden. Does this include water that has soaps, body wash/oils/radox?  Is it ok to use  only that for watering pots all the time?   I know this will have been asked before but I can't find a searching section on  the forum - sorry. Thanks, Maggie


  • This very dayimage our builders have connected water butts to all our new downpipes, and they've also connected a butt to the pipe that carries the water from our bath/shower/washbasin.  It's fine for watering direct onto the soil of veg and flowers.  Next year I plan to attach a hosepipe to the outlet and connnect a seeper-type hose to that and leave it laying between the rows of runner beans.

    I wouldn't water the leaves of plants that you're going to eat as it may leave a residue but as I said, watering the soil direct is fine.  It's certainly fine for ornamental and shrubs etc, even with soapy stuff in it.  We tend to use very mild shower stuff and shampoo but I don't suppose that any stuff you're prepared to put on your skin would damage the plants if it's well diluted.image

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • It is quite safe to use on soil, but not on plants to be eaten.    I prefer not to use it in pots.    Rain will help dilute it on the soil, but you may get a build-up of detergents in pots.

  • If I ever have to use drain-unblocker or noxious stuff down the plugholes I plan to divert the connection (if you get my meaning) - it's quite simple to do.

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • Thanks very much for interesting advice. And thanks for the link Kate1123.   Now I know what to do. Maggie

  • In 1976 when the great heat was on we were encouraged to use grey water and we did not directly on plants and we used it for the lawn.I still use it when there is a drought hose ban for the lawn but not my plants. I doimage use it also to wash the paths and steps .

  • FloBearFloBear Posts: 2,281

    Does anyone know how it is possible to divert bath and shower water if you live in a bungalow? There isn't room to install anything much into the pipes that run to the drains, and siphons wouldn't work as they wouldn't get low enough?

  • For the past 5 years I get my hoses attached to the washing machine waste water outlet and during the dry periods this grey water goes on the lawn and the flower beds. There has been no adverse effects. Only problem is, if a hosepipe ban was introduced I believe you would still commit an offence, ridiculus, isnt it

Sign In or Register to comment.