Houseplant Problems
Q.

cleaning plants with olive oil

Zone indoor plant | tahiraali added on December 30, 2014 | Answered

For polishing reasons, I clean my plants with olive oil. What to do now? I read in your article that it will damage them, so what to do now. How to remove the olive oil from plants?

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Heather
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on December 30, 2014

I would not worry about removing it as this can cause more damage. In most cases, they will be fine if it happens once. The problems occur more over prolonged use of polishing oils or waxes.

Just leave your plants be and in the future simply give your houseplants a nice cool or lukewarm (never hot or cold) shower or set them outside during a warm rainstorm. This will remove the dust and clean them well.

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theficuswrangler
Answered on January 3, 2015

If your plants have smooth leaves - that is, not fuzzy as in African violets - you can dust them with a feather or microfiber duster once a week or every other week. This will keep most plants quite clean. Plants with larger leaves, such as philodendron to fiddle leaf fig, can be polished beautifully by placing one hand beneath the leaf, then gently wiping the top of the leaf with a dry soft cloth, or even paper towel. Most leaves have a natural sheen, and this approach will bring it out, and it will look naturally shiny, rather than oily or plastic-like.

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