Water Quality And Sprouts, Wheatgrass

I want to write a bit about water quality while growing sprouts and wheatgrass, since I have searched and haven't found any substantial information on this subject. I live in Taiwan now, and everybody here either buys bottled water, boils the tap water, or has an elaborate and expensive water filter. I used to grow a lot of sprouts, but I quickly found that this required lots and lots of water. It was too expensive to soak, rinse, and wash all of the sprouts in bottled water, and I didn't have a great filter, so I just used tap water. Even though I love sprouts, I decided to stop growing and eating them here because I couldn't trust the quality of the water. Many people in this and other countries with questionable water quality grow and eat sprouts, and I'm sure most use regular tap water. I am just too afraid of parasites invading my body.
When I grow wheatgrass, I still use regular tap water to water the soil. After I cut the grass, I use bottled water to rinse and soak it for juicing. My theory is that there is one main difference between sprouts and wheatgrass when it comes to the quality of water used. While growing wheatgrass, the seeds grow in soil, and thus take nutrients from the watered soil. When you grow sprouts, they grow on trays or in jars without soil, and take everything they need directly from the water. This should mean that the quality of the water used is a lot more important for growing sprouts than wheatgrass.
That said, the water quality where I live in Taiwan probably isn't as bad as it seems. The government actually says it is fine to drink without treatment, but nobody believes them. I have actually heard that they overtreat the water here so much that it has too much chlorine and other chemicals in it. I'm sure the water quality is worse in many other places and people still grow wheatgrass and eat sprouts there as well. I'm also sure many other people are in the same situation as I am here--constantly wondering if it is ok or not to use the tap water. Unfortunately nearly all of the wheatgrass and sprouting sources are written with the assumption that you live in a country with reliable, safe drinking water coming out of your tap.
I will post another article if I find more information on this subject, as I feel it is an important one. In the meantime, if anyone has any hints, leave a comment here. Thanks


Christina Hogan said...

Hi there!

I just read that you were writing this from Taiwan. Can you tell me where you are getting the seeds? I am in Hsinchu and would love to know if you have any references for me. Thank you! Great blog!


LizOmen said...

Something I read and have great success with since i do use bottle water for my sprouts is when you drain the sprouts but the water in a watering can/ bucket because the other plants/ wheatgrass love this water. Then you are not wasting the expensive water. I do live in chicago so if i use tap water i do not bother with that step. Mostly because my mom doesnt love that bucket in her kitchen. For my outdoor setup my hose has a filter on it.

MrVegan said...

Hi Christina,

Yes, I am living in Taiwan and get some wheat seeds here. I usually get them from one of those stores in the day market that sells all kinds of beans, nuts, seeds, and that sort of stuff. Not many have wheat, so you will have to look around a bit.
You can also find organic wheat for growing wheatgrass for sale on the internet here. You will need someone who can read Chinese to help you find it and order it though, since I haven't found any in English. Many organic shops also sell it, but it is pretty expensive for such a small bag of wheat seeds!! Good luck.

Euodia said...
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Euodia said...
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