How to Clean Your Houseplants


Just as you need to clean yourself, you need to clean your houseplants.

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I know this sounds like a silly question, and you’ve probably never been asked it before, but “Are You Bathing Your Houseplants?” You should be. Just as you need to clean yourself, you must clean your houseplants.

Like anything else in your home, your houseplants will collect dust and dirt. In nature, plants are exposed to rain, wind, and animals brushing by them, which all help wipe or rinse off the dust and dirt accumulating on a plant’s leaves. But, inside, houseplants are only exposed to the exterior “conditions” you control.

In our home, the only air movement our houseplants receive is the occasional open breeze from our windows, the airflow coming from a return air vent, or moving air from running our bedroom fans or air purifiers. 

It is important to clean your houseplants because it allows your plants to absorb as much sunlight as possible.

They cannot absorb as much sunlight when they have dirt and dust on their leaves. As you may remember from grade school science class, photosynthesis is the way plants feed themselves and how they can release clean oxygen back into the atmosphere.

Now you may be asking yourself, “How do I bathe a houseplant?”

milwaukee domes tropical dome

There are a few ways to do it, but I will share the ways I personally clean my houseplants.

I fill a bowl with room temperature water and dab a washcloth into the water until it is damp. Then I carefully wipe every leaf. I like to wipe both the top and the bottom of the leaves. Yes, it is a process, but it is necessary for the well-being of your houseplants.

Tip: I use room temperature water so as not to shock the houseplant. This is also the same reason I use room temperature water when I am watering my houseplants.

If you want to work quickly, you can fill a spray bottle with room temperature water and spritz the leaves and quickly, but gently wipe off the water before it dries. I use the same spray bottle I use to mist my plants. Isn’t it cute?

spray bottle houseplants

Or, you can skip the water and use a Swiffer dusting cloth or you can use your husband’s socks! You can cover so much surface area with a large sock! I would only recommend this if you are good at keeping up with weekly cleanings. I prefer the water method. It would be best if you always wanted to be careful when cleaning houseplants because some are more fragile than others and are more susceptible to tearing. I would recommend cleaning or “bathing” your houseplant once every 2-3 weeks or, honestly, whenever you have a free moment to do some extra cleaning.

cleaning houseplant leaves

Want more houseplant tips? Let’s be friends on Instagram! 

how to clean your houseplants

Are You Bathing Your Houseplants?

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