It has been raining here this afternoon, and the trees, flowers and vegetables are drinking in the water. When I go outside to check on them after a rain, the plants all look perkier and healthier. It's a good reminder that we all need to drink plenty of water to stay healthy.
There's something about rainwater that gives plants more of what they need than sprinkler water. On the Internet, I tried to find out what that something is.
One thing rainwater provides is nitrogen. It comes to the plants in the form of nitrates. Plants use those nitrates to help them produce green leafy foliage.
The rainwater has a pH between 6.2 and 6.8. The term pH stands for potential hydrogen, and pH is a measure of how much alkalinity and acidity something contains. The lower the pH level, the higher the acidity. The higher the pH level, the higher the alkalinity.
I checked online to learn more about alkalinity. At https://study.com/academy/lesson/alkalinity-definition-calculation.html, I learned that alkalinity deals mainly with three ions: carbonate, bicarbonate, and hydroxide. They all easily react with hydrogen ions to form more neutral compounds.
Basically, alkalinity measures how well the water can neutralize acids that are added to it. The acids can come from dissolved rock as well as from soil, acid rain, runoff, or industrial chemical discharge. When you have a pH level of 7, that means the water is neutral. Rainwater, which is between 6.2 and 6.8 pH, is pretty close to a neutral balance between alkalinity and acidity. I think all of that means that rainwater delivers water to plants which they can easily use in a healthy way.
That's about as much information that my not very scientifically minded mind can absorb. But it's kind of interesting to know what rainwater contains that helps to make plants thrive after a rain.
The next time you go outside to check on your flowers, trees and the vegetables in your garden after a rain, be thankful for the rainwater. It's just what the plants need. When the vegetables in your garden are healthier, you are likely to be a little healthier too after you eat those vegetables.
I'm glad I live in a part of the country where we don't cope with too much rain. It is heartbreaking on the news to see the devastation that people deal with when they've lost everything to a flood. Though our area suffers from drought and all the challenges that brings, it's encouraging to see how well plants perk up with just a little rainfall.
We learn through challenges to find something to be thankful for, no matter what our circumstances.