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Author Topic: Watering a lemon tree with A/C condensation?  (Read 313 times)

TheWaterbug

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Watering a lemon tree with A/C condensation?
« on: August 07, 2017, 04:37:00 PM »
I put a small lemon tree (really a bush) in front of my house, and it happens to be right next to the condensation drain from my air conditioning system. So I re-routed the drain pipe so it fed directly into the tree's well. I figured it would be a good match, since I'll get condensation when it's really hot and the A/C is running most often.


Are there any significant downsides to using condensation for water? I know it's going to be semi-distilled, so it'll lack minerals, but that can be remedied by appropriate soils, mulches, and fertilizers, right?


The tree seemed to like it for the first week; I have a new flush of growth!



Then I found out that I can get up to gallon per hour of condensation 😱, which is way too much for one little tree. So I also need a way to use this source to water other plants in the vicinity. I'm not sure if I can use a classic drip-watering system (as I use for my garden) because this water source has no pressure and very low flow. It's a drip or dribble when it's running, but it will run up to 15 hours a day when it's really hot outside.
Sunset 23/USDA 11a, Elev. 783', Frost free since 8,000 BC. Plagued by squirrels, gophers, and peafowl, but coming to terms with it!

Millet

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Re: Watering a lemon tree with A/C condensation?
« Reply #1 on: August 07, 2017, 04:45:26 PM »
The condensation water should be fine, sort of like using rain water..  Just don't over water the tree.  When I was In the US Navy stationed in Okinawa our commanding officer used to collect the condensation water from the air conditioner for his wife's stem iron because of it purity.   

Susanne42

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Re: Watering a lemon tree with A/C condensation?
« Reply #2 on: August 07, 2017, 08:41:05 PM »
I water all my trees with condense water from the de-humidifier that I collect in a rain barrel for winter use. It is better then my hard well water.

BajaJohn

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Re: Watering a lemon tree with A/C condensation?
« Reply #3 on: August 07, 2017, 11:25:23 PM »
It is relatively safe, but you should clean the system once in a while....
http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/explainer/2011/08/how_gross_is_the_water_that_drips_from_air_conditioners.html.
Flag emitters and adjustable flow emitters can be used for low gravity feed systems - https://www.irrigationtutorials.com/drip-irrigation-emitters/

pineislander

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Re: Watering a lemon tree with A/C condensation?
« Reply #4 on: August 08, 2017, 09:08:33 PM »
I had a whole house dehumidification system on the ship, produced 8 gallons/hour. The original install had a conductivity probe to turn on a sump pump. When the sensor stopped working I measured the conductivity of the condensate and found it was very close to zero, like distilled water.

 

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