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On Wed, 18 Oct 2000 Dave Wilson wrote

	>I was wondering if someone would know why rain water makes plants grow
	better than any water that comes out of the garden hose.   I have
	plants growing in ponds out back and when it rains they grow much
	bigger and faster. <

I have noticed this happening in my yard. In a dry spell, I can water my
shrubs, trees, and lawn all I want, but not get a lot of growth. Then
when we get a few days of heavy rain, I see some good growth, and better
color in new leaves. I read some where recently that too much iron in an
aquarium can block the uptake of other nutrients. My well water is loaded
with calcium, iron and sulfur, and I believe the excess nutients are
limiting growth. Maybe something like this is happening in your ponds.
Your garden hose water may have more minerals in it than your plants
like; rain water might dilute the concentrations to the point more to
their liking.

Depending on the size of your ponds, you might want to consider
collecting rainwater. You can get a 33 gallon garbage can, and feed your
rain gutters into it. You hook a garden hose to it to drain it. Somewhere
I have plans from the county extension office for this. I've been
wondering about using rainwater in the aquarium. My main worries are
pollution and dirt/dust from the roof.

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