Annuals are up, flowered, and set seed before softened water
has a chance to affect them. IMHO
The reason is that the softener takes out calcium from the water, and replaces
it with sodium. The sodium clings chemically to the soil tighter than calcium
does. Over time, it could build up to the point that it would be too much for
Iris, Zone 5a, Sunset Zone 40
"That lyf so short, the craft so long to lerne"
Hippocrates quoted by Chaucer
In the early 80's, we bought a new house. The water was so hard that the
elements in the hot water heater shorted out in 3 months. Time to get a
water softener (in 9 years, had to get two of them, the water was so hard).
It had a by-pass valve on it. Push it, and the water by-passed the filter.
Both of my softeners had them. I would guess most of them do. I have seen
by-pass valves that connect to water softeners with standard threaded
fittings. The water pipes then connect to them. Depending on how your
plumbing was run, it might be a simple, few minute process to add one.
The salt in a water softener is used to clean the 'hard' stuff out of the
resin tank that the water goes through so that you have soft water. This
resin tank is flushed out (usually in the middle of the night) by the brine
solution. When this flushing process in finished, the tank is flushed and
back-flushed several times with clean water. There is no salt left to get
into your tap water. Salt in highly corrosive. The copper pipes in houses
would be failing (with time) left and right if they were constantly filled
with even a weak salt solution. When we washed dishes, the glassware would
dry crystal clear. If there were salt in the water, you would have dried up
salt crystals that would be seen as white deposits.
This has been my real life experiance. If my doctor told me to limit my salt
intake or risk serious health problems, I would not hesitate to use a water
softener, if I needed it. Luckily, the water were I live now is so soft that
I actually have to add stuff to it to make it harder whe I refill the spa.
USDA Zone 7, Sunset Zone 32 AHS HZ7 (Villa Rica, GA)