"well water unsuitable for irrigation" per Salem WaterLab

Asked April 13, 2018, 12:22 AM EDT

Hi, I bought a house 3 yrs ago in So Salem with a low output 450ft well. A few months later I learned that the well water Na+ was low 200 range. I am a novice trying-to-learn gardener & since my shrubs never look good did some more water tests in March this year. Learned that alkalinity is 329, sodium 204, pH 9 and low Ca+, Mg and hardness. Have never done a soil test. Can you direct me to someone I could discuss this with and tell me what I can do if anything so that I can keep my landscape alive or if moving ASAP is a better option. Thanks

Marion County Oregon

1 Response

Thanks for using our system. Is this your drinking water well. If so I would assume that you may not be in the market for a whole house water treatment system that could improve the overall quality for both home and irrigation use.

Many of the elements that you mention could be resolved with additional soil amendments, and your soil condition could be a factor. The soil test is an important factor if you are really looking for a whole answer for your landscape needs.

I am out of the office this week and part of next week on medical leave, but would be happy to talk more in depth about your individual situation. My office number is 541-766-3556 or email chrissy.lucas@oregonstate.edu

Our Marion County Master Gardeners can do the pH of your soil for free at our Marion County office if you are interested. We do have guides on our extension site for taking the soil sample to get the best result.

I look forward to chatting with you when I return to the office.