Folks who aren’t fond of wasting resources will want to maximize value from bong water. A common strategy is to use bong water to help plants grow.
However, the jury is still out on whether this is a good idea or not. Proponents argue that bong water is composed of nutritionally rich decomposing matter. However, experts claim that bong water is filled with yeasts and germs. Here’s an in-depth explanation if that sounds confusing.
You can use bong water for your houseplants in California. But you should thoroughly study your plant’s requirements before using bong water.
Every plant needs access to the basics, such as nutritionally rich soil, water, and sunlight. Micronutrients like potassium, phosphorus, and calcium are extremely important for plant growth.
Bong water contains water – but it is not a reservoir of nutrients, as argued. The older your bong water sits, the worse it will be for plants.
Old bong water is likely to be filled with microorganisms and yeast. This could spell disaster for your houseplants, especially if they are growing. It is a better idea to discard stagnant bong water instead.
Moreover, bong water has a higher pH value that could upset the plant’s acid-base chemistry. Bong water has a high acidity because of dissolved plant matter and smoke.
This could be good for plants that prefer acidic soil conditions, such as azaleas. We recommend studying your plant’s specific care requirements before using bong water.
Here is a list of plants that prefer acidic soils:
Try not to use bong water if your California houseplant does not prefer acidic soil.
Proponents of bong water also argue that it contains CO2, which is great for plants. However, it is harder for plants to absorb carbon dioxide from bong water.
The particulate residue from the smoke can clog plant pores. This can be deadly for houseplants because it prevents the absorption of CO2 and sunlight.
You are better off exhaling carbon dioxide around the plants – not an effective solution.
Here’s a quick low-down on how bong water is generated.
Bong is a filtration device that provides a smooth smoking experience. It filters toxic substances through water filtration. It is also known as a bubbler or a water pipe.
The smoke of burning weed makes its way from the bowl into the bong water. This filters out the vast majority of particulate matter, leaving only trace amounts of ash. After several uses, the bong water becomes filthy and needs to be replaced.
Bong water is composed of many compounds – some toxic, some desirable. The bong filters out some good and some bad.
You will also find residual herbs in the bong water. In other words, the bong water could have low concentrations of THC and CBD.
If the water is allowed to sit long enough, it will attract mold.
Here is a summary of the compounds that bong water contains.
- Cannabinoids such as THC and CBD
- Black mildew (if the water is allowed to sit for long enough)
- Plant matter
This means that pouring old bong water on houseplants is a bad idea. We don’t recommend trusting anecdotal reports about the benefits of bong water on house plants.
This is because science says that, more often than not, the risks outweigh the cons. Any benefits are going to be minimal at best.
A better option is to use the bong water for your compost pile. But so far, we don’t see evidence – besides anecdotal accounts – of bong water on houseplants.
There are a few rules you can follow if you must use bong water.
As mentioned, stagnant bong water contains bacteria, germs, yeasts, and microorganisms.
If possible, use the bong water as soon as you’re done smoking.
The acidity will be a significant concern for your plants after using bong water. You should check your soil for its acidity.
Here’s how you can check the pH value without having to use a testing kit:
- Collect two spoonfuls of the soil into a container
- Mix distilled vinegar into the sample soil
If the soil is alkaline, it will produce effervescence.
Do the following in case of no effervescence:
- Pour distilled water into the soil
- Wait until the soil becomes saturated with the water
- Add 100g of baking soda
If effervescence occurs, the soil is acidic at a pH value of 5-6.
If you see no reaction, the soil has a neutral pH. We recommend using a soil kit if you have several house plants
You can do a few things if the soil test you performed indicates high acidity. Let’s look at some practical solutions for restoring the soil’s pH value.
Add pulverized limestone to increase the pH at a faster pace. It would be best if you looked for agricultural lime or garden lime. Options like quicklime and hydrated lime may be too caustic for your soil.
Bone meal is an excellent source of calcium and can soil pH value. It is not as fast-acting as the lime method. It is best suited to slightly acidic soils.
A popular option is to add high-quality compost to the soil. This won’t immediately impact the pH value of the soil. However, it would improve the pH value over time.
Wood ash is a great way of increasing the soil’s pH value. Just make sure not to use treated woods or black walnut wood. These options can be highly toxic to your houseplants.
You can choose a combination of the above methods if needed. In any case, they should let you use bong water with your plants. Using bong water should not be a problem if the only problem is acidity.
Older bong water will eventually rot with mold, yeast, microorganisms, and germs. You can perform a visual inspection of the bong water before discarding it.
The bong water is toxic when it develops a layer of biofilm on the surface. This foam layer is no longer safe for plants, animals, or humans.
It could be home to all nasty pathogens such as mildew and strep. These substances can cause serious illnesses when ingested.
Just because it’s natural doesn’t mean it’s beneficial. The bacterial spores from the biofilm will become airborne and cause illness.
Some stoners are fond of keeping their bong water for a long period. They believe that stagnant bong water will help them get higher.
However, the bioavailability of cannabinoids in bong water is questionable at best. This is why keeping dirty bong water around is a terrible idea.
We recommend regularly changing bong water – even if it means throwing it down the drain.
In some cases, bong water could kill your houseplant.
This extreme case may occur if the bong water is highly acidic. You can add nutrients like magnesium, phosphorus, and calcium to reduce acidity.
Moreover, fungi and bacteria can quickly become a problem for your plant. It can result in infections.
Plants that have a bacterial infection will look visually bad. The leaves may turn a dull shade of brown and gray. They may also lead to root rot and black stems.
It is best to stick to normal water and a good watering schedule. Remember, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. And clean water is as good as it gets for your plant.
Here are some alternatives to bong water that we recommend using.
Rainwater is clean – and plants in the wilderness use it with no consequences. It also contains the perfect balance of minerals conducive to plant growth.
The best part is that it is free. But rainwater may not always be accessible where you live. In some cases, rainwater may be bad for your plant.
Rain water may be toxic if you live close to industrial sites with heavy pollution. It may be too acidic and unusable for your plants.
You can test rainwater by checking its pH value. It is safe to use for your houseplant if the pH value is approximately neutral. Other contaminants in rainwater are iron, lead, copper, and zinc.
Know your rainwater before you use it for your houseplants!
This is the next best thing after rainwater. Proponents argue that distilled water is better than rainwater itself.
This is because distilled water contains only one thing: distilled water. A major disadvantage is that it is deprived of chemicals and minerals. This means you will have to provide your plant with minerals like calcium and magnesium.
Another caveat is that distilled water is extremely expensive. This means it may not be a sustainable option for all growers.
It provides the perfect balance of cleanliness and nutritional benefits to house plants in California.
Tap water is abundantly available and is the most popular option. It is free to use, and most plants will grow perfectly fine with it.
Note that additives like fluoride and chlorine will not harm your plant. Make sure to leave your water for 24 hours is recommended before using it.
This is true if the water has high concentrations of fluoride and chlorine.
Bottled water may not be sustainable because it can be expensive in the long run. A major advantage of using bottled water is that it’s free of fluoride and chlorine.
Depending on the brand, it may also contain high amounts of vital nutrients. These could include calcium and magnesium. Bottled water that is sourced from springs contains a favorable nutritional profile.
Of course, the only downside is that it is very expensive. You have to use it multiple times during the day. It may lead to environmental pollution if plastic bottles are not properly disposed of.
For starters, it won’t get you high. And bong water can contain bacteria that could make you sick.
Moreover, bong water smells and tastes bad. This is your body’s way of telling you that the water is bad for you.
Some people drink bong water in the hopes of getting high. However, as mentioned earlier, the bioavailability of cannabinoid residue on bong water is extremely poor.
You won’t get high even if you drink one gallon of bong water. Critics argue that drinking bong water is like drinking from a dirty puddle. And they may not be wrong, given all the pathogens that reside in bong water.
If you are concerned about minimizing waste, you could use bong water to your compost. The compost is full of acidic materials, fungi, mold, and bacteria.
Just make sure to balance out the acidity with plant matter. Bongwater will spike acidity levels if the pile contains coffee grounds.
In other words, bong water is relatively useless. And that’s not necessarily a bad thing. It has served its purpose by filtering harmful materials from marijuana smoke.
So there you have it – a quick low down on the benefits of bong water.
To summarize, the disadvantages of bong water outweigh the advantages. It can provide some hydration but at the cost of spiking acidity.
Not to mention that bong water may be toxic to your plants. Stagnant bong water is a no-go for your plants because it contains bacteria. So what are you planning to do with your bong water? Let us know your personal experiences with bong water, and we might update this space.
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Hi! I’m Sophia, and I love plants – especially an expert in growing house plants. I stay in Chicago, United States of America, and through my blog and social media platforms, provide tips and tricks on how to grow healthy, vibrant plants indoors. Check out more here.