Greywater is household water that has not come into contact with toilet waste. Wastewater from the kitchen sink and dishwasher should not be reused as these can contain heavy loads of organic material, fats and caustic additives. As a result of drought conditions and current water restrictions in WA, there has been considerable community interest in greywater use.
You can apply greywater to your garden and lawn areas using a bucket only. The greywater may not be dispersed via a piped drainage or sprinkler system. If your house is connected to a sewer, it is important that you do not reuse all of your greywater as some greywater is needed to flush out the sewer pipes and prevent blockages.
Here are some tips for the successful reuse of greywater:
- Select garden friendly detergents and keep bleach and fabric softeners to a minimum
- Apply grey water in several locations, not one single point, to prevent pooling
- Apply greywater to those areas not readily accessible by children and pets
- Don’t use greywater from nappy washing
- Don’t reuse greywater when a household resident has an infectious disease (eg, diarrhoea, hepatitis, parasites etc)
- Don’t discharge greywater onto edible plants (eg, fruit, vegetables, herbs etc)
- Don’t store greywater.
- Keep the greywater within the boundaries of your own property.
- Don’t over water with greywater as it may clog the soil and cause offensive slime to accumulate.
- Some plants are not suited to greywater reuse such as protea, grevillea, hakea, banksia, silky oak, azaleas, camellias, gardenias, begonias and ferns.