Distilled Water for Plants: Is It Better than Tap Water?

When it comes to watering plants, there are many different opinions on the best way to do it. Some people say that you should only use distilled water, while others say tap water is fine. So, what’s the truth? Is distilled water better for plants than tap water? And if so, which plants do well with distilled water? Keep reading to find out!

What Is Distilled Water for Plants?

Distilled water is water that has been boiled and then cooled, so all of the impurities are removed. Distilled water is an excellent choice for watering plants because it doesn’t contain any chlorine or other chemicals that could harm them.

Distilled water is often recommended for houseplants since they can be sensitive to water pH balance changes. If you use distilled water to feed your plants, you do not need to add any additional supplements.

Typically, distilled water is available at most grocery stores and pharmacies. You should be able to find it in the water section, near the other bottled waters.

Is Purified Water the Same as Distilled Water for Plants?

You may be wondering if purified water is the same as distilled water for plants. The answer is both yes and no. Purified water has been filtered of contaminants, while distilled water has had all impurities removed through the distillation process.

That means that distilled water is purer than purified water. However, both types of water are free of chemicals and minerals that can harm plants.

Why Do People Use Distilled Water for Plants

Most people tend to use distilled water for plants because it is pure. It does not contain any minerals, which can build up the soil and eventually harm the plant if the tap water is very high in minerals. Additionally, distilled water has a neutral pH, so it will not change the soil’s pH.

However, you don’t need to use distilled water if your tap water is of good quality. If you have hard water, it’s best to use distilled water or rainwater to water your plants.

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That’s the main reason for using distilled water on your houseplants if you don’t have access to rainwater. It’s also a good idea to use distilled water when starting a new plant or repotting an old one, to make sure the plant doesn’t get a shock from the water change.

How Do You Know if Your Plant Needs Distilled Water

There’s no one-size-fits-all answer to this question – you’ll need to do a little detective work to figure out which type of water your plant needs. If you’re not sure what kind of water to use for your plant, check the label on the nursery pot or ask the staff at your local garden center. They should be able to give you some guidance.

Here are a few general tips to help you determine whether your plant needs distilled water:

  • Check the leaves of the plant. If they are yellow or brown, that could signify that the plant is not getting the correct type of water.
  • Check the roots of the plant. If they are white and mushy, that’s a sign that the plant is getting too much water.
  • Check the soil of the plant. If it is soggy or wet, that’s a sign that the plant doesn’t need more water.
  • If you’re still not sure, it’s always best to err on the side of caution and give your plant distilled water. Better safe than sorry!

Ultimately it’s going to be up to you to decide which type of water to give your plants. Remember that distilled water is an excellent option for plants that need it, and it’s always better to be safe than sorry!

Which Plants Do Well with Tap or Distilled Water?

There is no definitive answer to whether plants grow better with tap or distilled water. However, some plants do prefer one over the other. For example, succulents and cacti do well with tap water, whereas African violets flourish when given distilled water.

Below is a list of plants and flowers that benefit from being watered with distilled water:

  • African violet
  • Bromeliad
  • Cactus
  • Ivy
  • Orchid
  • Philodendron
  • Spider plant

If you are not sure whether or not to water your plants with distilled water, it is best to do some research specific to your type of plant. In most cases, if a plant benefits from distilled water, it will be stated on the plant tag or in the care instructions.

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Keep in mind that if you do use distilled water to water your plants, you may need to supplement their nutrition with fertilizers more often than if you were using tap water. Using supplements is recommended because distilled water does not contain any minerals essential for plant growth.

What Are the Benefits of Using Tap or Distilled Water to Feed Your Plants

There are many benefits to watering your plants with either tap or distilled water. Which water you choose to use is up to you, as both have their advantages. For example, some people believe that plants grow better when watered with distilled water, while others find that tap water is fine.

The main difference between the two types of water is that distilled water is purified, meaning that it has been boiled and the steam collected to create a pure water source. Distilled water makes it an excellent choice for houseplants as it removes any harmful contaminants present in tap water.

On the other hand, tap water is often chlorinated, which can harm plants. It also contains minerals like calcium and magnesium, which can build up soil and eventually damage plants. If you do choose to use tap water, be sure to let it sit out for 24 hours before watering your plants to allow the chlorine to evaporate.

No matter which type of water you choose, be sure to test it on a small plant first to judge the effects. For example, some plants do better with distilled water, while others prefer the added minerals in tap water.

Do Plants Grow Better With Tap Water or Distilled Water?

Plants typically found in the home do not need distilled water to thrive. In fact, most plants will do just fine if you use tap water left out overnight to allow the chlorine to evaporate. That being said, some plants prefer or require distilled water.

We’ve touched on that list previously, so I won’t go into it again, but in general, I would say that plants watered with distilled water do not grow as well as plants watered with tap water. The various minerals present in tap water help to fertilize the plants.

There are a few exceptions, of course. Aloe Vera is one plant that does better with distilled water; it’s relatively easy to find an aloe vera plant, so if you’re uncertain of the water needs for your plants, start with that one.

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Another exception is cacti and other succulents; they do better in arid environments, so using distilled water helps to replicate their natural habitat more closely.

If you choose to water your plants with distilled water, you may need to give them a mineral or supplement to make up for the lack of minerals in the water. Epsom salts are a good choice, as they contain magnesium and sulfate, both of which are essential plant nutrients.

So do plants grow better with tap water or distilled water? In general, I would say that most plants do better with tap water, but there are always exceptions.

What Are the Risks of Using Distilled Water to Water Plants

Some risks when using distilled water to water plants include:

  • The plant may not be getting the right minerals and nutrients it needs
  • Over time, the soil can become harder and more difficult for the plant to absorb any water that is given
  • Chlorine in tap water can act as a weed killer, so if you’re using tap water to water your plants, you may be inadvertently harming them.

While there are some risks associated with using distilled water to water plants, it is generally safe. However, if you have any concerns, it is always best to consult with a professional.

What I’ve outlined here are extreme cases, and in my experience, I haven’t come across them. I’ve only found these out through my research. I personally don’t see any risks in using distilled water to water my plants but do what you feel comfortable with.

Will Distilled Water Kill Plants?

In my experience, no. I have never seen a plant that was killed by using distilled water. On the contrary, most plants do just fine when watered with distilled water. However, I would not recommend using distilled water to water plants if the plant is already stressed in some way. If a plant is wilting, for example, then you might want to use tap water to help revive the plant.

Another thing to consider is that distilled water does not have any minerals. For this reason, if you are using distilled water to water your plants, you might also want to supplement with fertilizer or another type of plant food. Fertilizer is essential for plants that need more nutrients than distilled water.

So, if you’re wondering whether to use distilled water or tap water for your plants, the answer is: it depends. If you have a stressed plant or need more nutrients, tap water might be better. Otherwise, distilled water is just fine.


In general, most plants do better with tap water than distilled water. However, there are always exceptions, so it is best to consult with a professional if you have any concerns. If you choose to use distilled water to water your plants, be sure to also supplement with fertilizer or another type of plant food.