Chlorinated water and biological seed treatments

What you'll learn: 

  • Not all biological seed treatments are bio-enhancers

  • Biological seed treatments — including some z bio-enhancers — often contain living organisms

  • Municipal water supplies contain chlorine that can impact the effectiveness of bio-enhancers

  • When preparing bio-enhancers for treatment, dechlorination systems are recommended for water sources that contain chlorine


Bio-enhancers often contain living organisms

Biological seed treatments, many of which can be referred to as bio-enhancers, often contain living organisms such as bacteria and fungi; therefore, anything that can kill or injure these organisms can be detrimental to the effectiveness of these seed treatments.

Chlorinated water

To keep water safe for human consumption, municipalities treat their water supply with variable levels of chlorine to kill bacteria and fungi that might be within pipes and water storage facilities. If chlorinated water is used while seeds are being treated with bio-enhancers, it can have an adverse effect on the treatment’s effectiveness. Therefore, the recommendation is to avoid using water directly from a municipal supply line in the preparation of bio-enhancers. The best water source is from a non-chlorinated source.

Recommendations if chlorinated water is the only source

  • Install a chlorine filter in the water line to remove chlorine. In general, these filters are comprised of activated carbon

  • Allow chlorine to dissipate by leaving in an open container for six to 24 hours

  • Use dechlorination tablets

  • These practices can help bio-enhancers deliver the full benefits to a crop

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