How To Clean Houseplants
It is necessary to clean houseplants periodically. As our homes accumulate dust, our plants do too, but taking a few minutes every couple of months to do a spot of cleaning will help keep your plants looking great.
The guide will help you understand why cleaning is important and how it benefits the plants. We will also explain what techniques are effective for which types of plants. As well as leaf shining, we will talk about it.
There may be times when this question is not needed. In addition to the obvious benefit of plants, here are a few more reasons why plants can be healthy to us. In addition to producing oxygen, reducing airborne bacteria, and removing harmful toxins from the air, they have a calming effect on our mood. It might not seem like a big deal, but these effects can be drastically reduced if plants are dirty or covered with dust.
Just like a mechanical water filter needs to be replaced from time to time, living breathing plants require a small amount of maintenance every so often. This way, you’ll be able to continue bringing maximum benefits from plants to your home or office.
Appearance. Most people spend most of their time cleaning and dusting their homes for this reason. Generally, we like to live in nice places, both for our own sanity and also for keeping our homes from being trashed when we have visitors. The state of a dirty, dusty plant is similar to that of a table or TV in the same condition, namely not good.
Plant Health. Plants need to be free of dust if they are to be healthy. Plants’ natural habitat is outdoors, where they are exposed to wind and rain, which combined with humidity helps keep their foliage dust-free, which is good for keeping the plants healthy. As a result, the following benefits occur:
Photosynthesis. Food is produced by plants through photosynthesis, which requires access to light. Whenever the leaves are covered in an invisible layer of dust, the amount of available light is reduced. Also, the amount of Carbon Dioxide that enters the plant and the oxygen that leaves will be reduced. Clean and attractive plants therefore maximize the possibility of efficient and productive photosynthesis, which powers their growth and all of their activities.
Pest Resistance. Pest attacks are more likely to occur when plants are stressed. The same thing is true for certain illnesses and when people are feeling low. Additionally, unmanaged plants do not produce as much photosynthesis as managed plants, making them easier targets for pests.
From the outside, this seems like an unnecessary section of the guide because everyone knows how to clean a plant, right? In most cases, multiple methods can be used to keep them clean, although certain methods should not be used or are physically impossible.
Listed below are some suggestions about how to choose plants that work best for you. We’d love to hear your favorite methods you swear by in the comments below.
Indoor Shower. It is by far the easiest way to wash houseplants that you place them in the shower and gently wash them down.
The water should be lukewarm rather than hot or cold, and no soap should be used. Several can be washed at the same time, so it’s very fast. Despite this, you will almost certainly wash away a small amount of soil, so be careful, especially if you have drainage problems.
Outdoor Shower. Don’t worry about it; let mother nature handle it for you! If the weather is not too stormy or windy and the temperature is warm enough, you can leave your plants in the rain for a few hours.
Damp Cloth. Those plants which cannot be moved easily, such as an old Rubber plant or a mature Dragon Tree, or those that have very large leaves can be gently rubbed over with a damp cloth. To prevent tearing, support the leaf with your hand from below.
Misting. Plants cannot all be washed in the shower or wiped down. Some bonsai pachypodium, for example, are sensitive to excessive overwatering, resulting from flooding with water during a shower, and can be damaged by attempting to clean them with a cloth. Your hands, the cloth, and possibly the plant! Misting water where it’s needed without overdoing it is a great way to get it where it’s needed.
Brushes. The final popular method of cleaning leaves is with art brushes or puffers. Alternatively, spray it on cacti with only a couple of small spines or hairy plants with big leaves, like African Violets, which tend to leave ugly watermarks when they are splashed. The process can be a bit time-consuming and fiddly, but it is less hectic than other methods. Remove the dust by brushing or blowing it away.
Using Leaf Shine Products
Many house plants lose the glossy sheen of new leaves over time, even if they are cleaned regularly, even if they are dirt free. Clean leaves don’t restore the plants to their former glory. It’s normal to feel this way and not an indication that something is wrong.
It’s understandable if you want to recreate the new shine look, however most people just leave things as they are.
It is often thought that the most beautiful-looking plants have shiny leaves that are highly showy. Due to this, there are literally hundreds of leaf shine products and several Do It Yourself options available. What are their advantages, how should they be used, and do they work on all kinds of plants?
The use of milk and beer as “natural” products to give shine is often recommended, but they have virtually no shine-producing properties over just plain water. Mineral and olive oils may provide a significant shine, but in the long run, you will only make things more difficult. The reason is that these substances are slightly sticky, causing them to attract dust and dirt more quickly, making your hard work less attractive.
In the unlikely event that we catch you considering these ideas, we would gently take our hands off your shoulders and walk you away from mayonnaise jars, yogurt and banana skins. We understand that you may get the shine you want, but let us offer you a disclaimer. Most people don’t use these products to clean their work surfaces, and they shouldn’t be used on plants either.
As with other dust-attracting products, these will eventually wear off and leave a residue on the leaves you just cleaned. Since these next products can be smelly and feed bacteria, they are unhygienic to leave on the leaves you’ve just cleaned.
Chemical methods are often used. Yes, it is controversial. Leaf shining, however, is completely optional! If you opt for this, they typically come in either aerosol or liquid form, but aerosols are recommended for plants with lots of small leaves, while liquids are better for plants with bigger leaves.
It is generally safe to apply Leaf Shine to most plants. However, you should check the specific plant pages for details. We will let you know if you shouldn’t be using it. While it is important not to polish too often, or on dirty leaves, the basic principles of polishing include:
- Do not polish new or very young leaves.
- Do not press down hard on the leaves as you “rub in”.
- Always read the manufactures instructions.
- Do not risk it on a prized pot plant. Just in case.