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If you put hard work into your vegetable garden, your main goal is most likely to see your plants thrive. However, when you see your plants begin to wither over time, you probably find yourself frantically running through your plant health checklist. Unfortunately, the silent killer that might not be on your list happens to be one of the most important: the quality of your water supply.

Water is essential for the life of all plants, however if your water is contaminated, it could be hurting your plants more than helping them. If you’re seeing slow growth, wilting leaves, gradual death or maybe just reading up on how you can prolong the life of your plant, then you should take a look at these silent killers that could be in your water supply:

Presence of Boron

Boron is an element that occurs naturally in soil and small amounts are necessary for plant growth. The amount of boron can become harmful to plants if there’s enough concentration in your water supply, which causes boron toxicity in plants. If there’s an excess amount of boron in your water supply, you will start to notice yellowing or browning of foliage and dry leaves.

Symptoms can vary by plant and it’s best to get your water tested for high amounts of boron to find out if this may be the cause of the problems you are experiencing.

Out of Balance pH

Plants usually require water with a balanced pH, which means water contains equal parts of acid and alkaline, as well as contains a pH balance of 7.0. Calcium and magnesium levels tend to drop if water is too acidic, which is harmful to plants. Your plants require calcium for cell growth and magnesium to form chlorophyll.

On the other hand, if water is too alkaline, calcium levels will begin to build up. Even though your plant requires some level of calcium, a build up will eventually cut off the flow of vital nutrients to the roots.

Most herbs and vegetables thrive with a pH between 5.5 and 6.5, but it’s best to test your water regularly to keep pH levels balanced and on track.

Large Amounts of Chlorine

Most of the time, Chlorine is added to water in order to kill bacteria and allow for a cleaner water source. However, large amounts can be harmful to your vegetable garden. Large quantities of Chlorine contain sodium, which can dehydrate plants overtime. It’s best for your plants if only small to moderate amounts of Chlorine are in your water supply.

If the health of your garden plants is making you curious about what’s in your water supply, consult with a professional at Brelje & Race Laboratories to test your water and find out exactly what your plants are consuming. We also invite you to explore our site further to find out more information about the laboratory services we offer.