Houseplants are one of the most important accessories for your home. Bringing in a little bit of the outdoors can breathe new life into a room and add layers of texture to the overall design. Plants work to divide spaces or fill a voided corner, but just like any other item in your home, they will collect dust over time. So, how do keep your houseplants clean?
One thing to always keep in mind when you are cleaning indoor plants (living or artificial) is that they are delicate and must be treated gently. Vacuum cleaners, canned air and feather dusters may get the job done quickly, but you can expect some damage along the way.
With artificial plants it’s important to consider the materials that were used to make the plant. There is always a possibility of ruining fabrics and finishes, or breaking attached pieces, so it’s up to you to decide what your plants can handle before you begin cleaning them.
- Start by laying down newspapers on a countertop or open table. Bring living, potted plants to the work area. For artificial arrangements, take them apart and lay out the separated pieces. Go through the stems, branches and/or flowers, and throw away any broken pieces or fallen leaves and petals.
- For living plants, spray them with light soapy water, followed by a clean water rinse. This will help them stay clean AND pest free (a very important point). It may be necessary to wipe down the dirty leaves with a moist cloth, so always be sure to wipe from stem to tip, with both the top and bottom of the leaf at the same time.
- Plastic plants are much easier; just swish them around in a bucket of warm water to remove the dust and dirt. You may use a soft towel to clean the extra grimy areas, but other than that, you can lay them out to dry and you’re done.
- Silk flowers need a little extra care. Place them in a bag with a half-cup of cornmeal and gently shake the bag for a few minutes. The little grains will act like an exfoliator and scrub away the dust and dirt without damaging the surfaces. Once you’ve shaken out the excess particles, use a blow dryer (on low heat) to blow away the leftover cornmeal until the plant is clean.
It’s a good idea to keep up regular maintenance on your houseplants. For living plants, it will help them to grow and thrive in your home. For artificial plants, it will keep them in better shape for a longer period of time. Either way it adds that clean, natural touch that only nature can provide.