Filtered water for roses - advantages and disadvantages

I have a question, that has been occupying me for a long time, about using filtered water for roses in general, but preferably using it for rose seedlings. My basic water is alcaline and has a pH value round about 7,8 - 8,0 . So far, I used vinegar or citric acid for lowering the pH level under control of ph- measuring strips. Both mediums are evaluated differently.

The topic: @LarryD using vinegar to lower soil pH also highlights possible problems with both mediums, so I’m continously looking for a better solution. However, the alternatives are rare.

Water filters, typically carbon filters, are very controversial discussed and are considered as a breeding ground for many germs.

Therefore, does anybody have experiences with the use of filtered water for roses and rose seedlings and can allay my fears.

I woud be very happy for any opinions and advices !

Can’t ally your fears but have wonder for awhile switching to bulj distilled for aesthetic reasons (city water very hard). Probably would avoid the crud deposits.

Only for early days of seedlings. Have litres of unused B-1 Thrive l can add for weak feed into distilled. Might try this spring if any germinates.

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The problem I see with vinegar is lack of a definition and concentration precision. You need to know how much hardness there is in the water, then assume it is all present as carbonates, sulfates or some mix of the two. Adding acetic acid you will need 2 molecules of acid for each sulfate or carbonate. So unless you have a pH meter or a lot of pH paper it will be easier to stick with a growing medium that has a lot of peat or clay that can buffer the process by binding the solubilized salts of calcium and magnesium. Unless you water is very hard and used for a very long time it probably won’t be a problem during germination. I always germinate my seeds in vermiculite with calcium nitrate fairly high, then transfer the seedlings into some kind of potting mix plus garden soil to grow. Main factor controlling growth is light, then fertilizer. Hard water which we have here, has never been a problem.

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@RikuHelin @LarryD Many thanks for help and assistance !

I agree that light in correspondance with temperature is the main factor for controlled growth of seedlings. Recent years have shown that rugosa hybrid seedlings started well, but only a few weeks later, first chlorotically symptoms appeared which resulted in developmental disorders and were difficult to be repaired, neither with adding more peat and clay in this stage. That’s why my efforts go around to avoid such a situation from the outset. But I must see, that filtered water is probably not the solution. Bottled drinking water from the beverage market has mostly better pH values. Maybe this option can help at least indoors over the cliffs.

R. rugosa is definitely one of the pickiest when it comes to pH. I haven’t used filtered water for roses very much (assuming you mean filtration and similar systems that actually remove calcium from water, like reverse osmosis or water softeners). However, I do use pure/distilled water instead of tap water for all of my indoor plants, including rose seedlings. If you happen to have a home furnace or air conditioning system that produces water as a byproduct of its processes, or if you use a dehumidifier that condenses water from the air as it runs and catches it in a reservoir, those can be good sources.


@MidAtlas I understand. Thanks so much !