how do you keep the leaves clean

seattlemarigeneDecember 6, 2007

I have some water spots on some of my orchid leaves.I take a damp paper towel and wipe the orchid leaves but they still dont look clean enough.I remember back in the 70's we used to use mayo to make plant leaves clean and shiney looking.Is that a safe idea with orchids...?

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Seattle, I am sure people have many other home recipes, but I just received a sample of Botani-wipes today, they are made with neem-oil for creepy crawly things. My plants look so pretty and smell nice too. I am going to order me some tomorrow.

    Bookmark   December 6, 2007 at 10:53PM
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xmpraedicta(3b Saskatoon)

Hello! I feel like mayo will lead to unfortunate mold problems!!! Can't you use diluted lemon juice to clean them? There are also some commercial products out there, I think. Or you could switch to RO water and then you won't get any spots! :D

    Bookmark   December 6, 2007 at 11:26PM
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whitecat8(z4 MN)

The Botani-wipes sound interesting.

When a plant is brand new, I've been using full-strength lemon juice from a bottle, wiped on both sides of leaves w/ a paper towel. When the plant's due for leaching, I run tap water over the leaves, rubbing both sides w/ my fingers. So far, it's working.


    Bookmark   December 7, 2007 at 12:04AM
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mehitabel(z6 MO)

I'm with Calvin on this, hold back on the mayo. Soapy water, dilute lemon or orange juice is what Peter Lin recommends.

    Bookmark   December 7, 2007 at 12:24AM
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I mist with a little neem oil with a drop of soap in water solution every couple of weeks and the leaves stay very clean and shiny. before i discovered neem oil, i used to wipe or wash the leaves with little soap and water. However, with my non-orchid plants i used to get spider mites or aphids in the winter. since using the neem oil, those pests seem to be under control so far.

    Bookmark   December 7, 2007 at 10:10AM
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wow so many good ideas....thanks alot..I will have those leaves looking good in no time..I cant stand haveing anything looking dirty in my house..:0)

    Bookmark   December 7, 2007 at 11:40AM
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Hello -
Milk (from a cow!) will remove the white powdery deposit and leave the foliage glossy. I think it's the lactic acid that dissolves the chemical build up. I use it on a cotton pad for smaller plants, and in a spray bottle for the bigger ones, then wipe with cotton or a tissue.
Soymilk, sadly, does not have the same effect.
Cheers - Nancy

    Bookmark   December 7, 2007 at 12:16PM
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Pokon leaf shine is what I spray on the leaves only.It gets rid of water spots and provides a shine.

    Bookmark   December 9, 2007 at 9:34AM
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a teaspoon of olive oil, mixed with a few drops of washing liquid and topped up with about 1/2 litre of water works for me.....


    Bookmark   December 9, 2007 at 11:37AM
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Gosh!with so many ideas Im tempted to try something different on each orchid...thanks gang..:0)

    Bookmark   December 9, 2007 at 12:03PM
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ifraser25(z11 Brazil)

Hehehe. I loved this post. How the hell do you wipe the leaves of 200 orchids clean every week! I have a life! Smack 'em hard with the hose!

    Bookmark   December 11, 2007 at 8:53PM
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Lol darlin...I only have a dozen orchids and Im a clean freak so my leaves have to be clean..dont think the hose would reach from outside to in the living room anyway...:0)

    Bookmark   December 11, 2007 at 9:35PM
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I like ifraser's idea ..
I use rain water or mine would have white leaves .
Beware of oils if the plant gets direct sun , I know of a person that used Mayo. to clean leaves before taking to a show . It was put into it's usual spot after the show , All the leaves died/cooked it was a Catt. Gin

    Bookmark   December 12, 2007 at 12:47PM
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