Plants, especially indoor plants, are subject to the accumulation of dust and dirt that occurs naturally in almost all environments. In outdoor environments, the rain regularly cleans the leaves with its clean water, but this does not happen when we grow our plants indoors. Keeping them clean is not only a matter of aesthetics, but also an important source of health for the plant and for us.
Why you have to clean the leaves of the plants
Obviously, nobody likes to see their plants with gray leaves or full of lime marks or dirt: they can give an even worse impression than a slightly dirty floor or furniture. However, this is not even the main reason to care for and keep the leaves of your plants clean.
In the leaves are the stomata , which are the pores through which the plant breathes . Here you can know better what the stomata of a plant are . Dirt can clog these pores, complicating the photosynthesis process for the plant . A layer of dust or lime accumulated, in addition, reduces the insolation that the leaf receives, again harming the vital process of photosynthesis that allows the plant to manufacture its nutrients.
Cleaning the leaves regularly will keep your plants in their best condition, but be careful, they cannot be cleaned in any way, and improper cleaning can do more harm than good, damaging the plant or causing the appearance of diseases in it.
Do you want to know some tricks so that the leaves of the plants shine without putting their health at risk and improving it? These are some of the most used methods.
How to clean large-leaved plants
These are the simplest of all, as large, smooth blades tend to be strong and resistant, and also collect highly visible dirt. Follow these steps to clean large plant leaves :
- Prepare a microfiber cloth, which are very soft in texture and will not harm your plant. Soak it in lime-free water. Do not use the tap, which would end up leaving stains on the leaves or even damaging them: distilled or filtered water is much better, or even the collection of rain.
- Pass the cloth carefully over the blade, from the base to the end, holding it with your hand from below, without applying pressure.
- Leave the plant in a bright area without direct sun so that the damp leaves dry without burning.
Here are some plant leaf cleaning products that you can use instead of water.
How to clean the leaves of plants with milk
Water is not the only option to clean the leaves of the plants and, in fact, it is not even the best to get a good finish. Here we explain how to use milk to clean dirty plant leaves , as it will give them a shiny finish, and it also has an antifungal action that will protect them against fungal attack.
- Dampen the cloth in milk (the type does not matter).
- Rub the leaves gently with it.
- Let it air dry, that is, you do not need to wipe another dry cloth or anything.
How to use beer to clean plant leaves
As with milk, beer can also be used to cleanse plants in addition to strengthening them. The beer barley acts as a foliar fertilizer, so in addition to leaving them shiny, you will be providing them with very beneficial nutrients. Apply the beer to clean the leaves of the plants like this:
- Dip the cloth or cloth in the beer and wring it out so that it is just moistened.
- Run the cloth over the sheets gently, removing dirt and leaving them shiny.
- Let the beer air dry from the surface of the leaves.
How to use banana peel to clean leaves
Another widely used method of cleaning the leaves of large-leaved plants is to use a banana peel . Follow these simple steps:
- You can use the skin of any banana you have eaten recently, just peel it off and take a single strip.
- Rub the inside of the banana peel gently against the surface of the leaf.
- You don’t need to clean up afterwards, just carefully remove any banana residue that may have stuck. You can do this with a cloth dampened with water.
This not only does not attract insects or pests of any kind, but it also leaves the leaf very shiny and provides it with a large amount of nutrients, acting as a foliar fertilizer, like beer.
How to clean small-leaved plants
For small or delicate leaves, it is best to use a small soft bristle brush . Follow these steps to clean small-leaved plants :
- Dampen the brush or brush only based on the moisture needs of the plant. If it is a plant that does not appreciate environmental humidity, it is better to use a dry brush or very little damp to remove dirt.
- Always brush the leaves gently from base to tip.
- Remember never to rub the flowers, they are very delicate and we can damage them unintentionally. Of course, the bracts are not petals, and these can be cleaned normally.
How to clean cactus and succulents
Cacti and succulents are doubly difficult to clean because, not only can they be very delicate, but also some have thorns that make the work difficult. However, not cleaning them should never be an option. Learn how to clean cacti and other similar plants with these steps:
- Use soft brushes or brushes, which allow you to keep your fingers away from the thorns and reach their little recesses without damaging the fleshy texture of these plants.
- Moisten the brush or brush very little with water and pass it through all the nooks and crannies you can, but do so very carefully so as not to damage the fleshy part but also not to break the thorns that protect the plant.
- Let the little water you have used dry completely so you can see the result and go over some nooks and crannies if necessary.
How to clean hanging plants
Hanging plants can be cleaned as we have explained in the previous cases, but sometimes this is not enough or they have many small leaves and the task is very long. Thus, there is also an ideal method to clean the leaves of hanging plants :
- Fill a large enough container or sink with warm water.
- Take the pot of your hanging plant and, very carefully, turn it over holding the substrate so that it does not fall.
- Dip the leaves of the plant gently, and leave them like that for a few seconds before removing them, letting most of the water drip off.
- Put it to dry later in an area where it does not burn or accumulate too much moisture.