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Effect of turf grass growth in sands irrigated with laundry and bathtub greywater

Radin Mohamed, R., Anda, M.ORCID: 0000-0001-7398-4192, Dallas, S.ORCID: 0000-0003-4379-1482 and Ho, G.ORCID: 0000-0001-9190-8812 (2011) Effect of turf grass growth in sands irrigated with laundry and bathtub greywater. In: International Conference on Integrated Water Management, 2 - 5 February, Murdoch University, Perth, Australia.



Reusing greywater from laundry and bathtub is an option for residents wanting to keep their gardens and lawns green, especially when water restrictions are in place during summer period. The present study was carried out to evaluate the effects of laundry and bathtub greywater irrigation in sands on the growth of couch grass (Cynodon dactylon L.) sod in a tank experimental study. Untreated laundry and bathtub greywater collected from a residential home were monitored for sodium (Na), chlorine (Cl) and boron (B), as these elements are dominant in household detergent and cleaning products. The turf grasses were planted in the modified aquarium tank with triplicate for each irrigation type. Irrigation sources included (i) 100% potable water as a control (TW) (ii) untreated full cycle laundry water (LGW) (iii) untreated bathtub water (BGW) over 24 weeks, starting from October 2009 to March 2010. The reduction on soil hydraulic conductivity was tested using double rings infiltrometer. A mass balance was carried out to determine the amount of Na, Cl and B flowing into and out of the tank. The results showed that the high salt (Na, Cl) and B content was significant in laundry greywater compared to bathtub. Irrigation with laundry and bathtub greywater without fertilizer addition was insufficient to sustain the turf growth. Long-term use of laundry and bathtub greywater can lead to salt and metal accumulation in the soil and subsequent uptake by the turf grass. Turf grass established well at the first 8 week irrigated with LGW and BGW, but did not survive after 16 weeks of study. There was a greater reduction of growth in species that accumulated more salt and B. Consequently, the turf grass requires an addition of nutrients in its fertilization program in order to sustain the turf grass growth.

Item Type: Conference Item
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Environmental Science
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