Houseplant Hygiene: How to Keep Your Plants Clean and Healthy - Leaf Culture

Houseplant Hygiene: How to Keep Your Plants Clean and Healthy

Dusty winds not only fill all of your furniture and décor with dust but also form a layer of dust on your houseplants. As you dust-clean your home, your plants also need to be cleaned every now and then. Keeping your house plants dust-free also has a positive effect on their health as dust on the leaves hinders the process of photosynthesis as well. Fortunately, it just takes a few minutes to make your plants squeaky clean, and with no cost!

So here's a beginner’s guide on how to keep your houseplants clean and healthy:
Trimming and pruning: Pruning is the first step to cleaning plants. If you see dead or yellowing leaves, it is best to prune them away as these can harbour pests or diseases. Trim them off using clean pruning shears or scissors. This not only improves the plant's appearance but also allows it to focus its energy on healthy growth.

Brush and wipe: Take a soft, damp cloth or a feather duster and gently wipe off the dust from the leaves. Some plants are more delicate as compared to others. So depending on their slenderness, be gentle with cleaning plants not to break or damage the foliage. For plants that are extra delicate, such as ferns, use a soft brush or a sprinkler to sprinkle mist on the leaves that will wash away the dust.

Dunk wash: Plants with larger leaves like rubber plant and fiddle-leaf fig can be washed lightly by dipping them in water. Take a tub or take the plant to a sink or use a gentle spray of water at room temperature to rinse the leaves. Often white spots are formed on the surface of some leaves which can be removed by cleaning them with a mixture made from a small amount of dish detergent and water. It is important to let the plant drain thoroughly before placing it back in its original location.

Removing insects and fungi: Pests like aphids, mealy bugs or spider mites are very commonly seen on plants, especially in the monsoon season. It’s important to address the infestation promptly to prevent it from growing to alarming levels. A mixture of water and mild liquid dish soap (about a teaspoon per litre) is very effective in washing away the insects. Apply this solution to both the upper and lower sides of the leaves. For more information on how to keep your plants healthy in every season, visit  

Clean the soil surface: If your pot has any fallen leaves or debris on the soil surface, remove it to prevent fungal growth and pests. Gently scrape off the top layer of soil and replace it with fresh potting mix to remove any accumulated salts or mineral build-up.

Before following these steps on how to keep your houseplants clean and healthy, know the unique requirements or sensitivities of your houseplants to provide them with the best care. Find complete information on keeping your plants healthy at