Let's Groom Our Plants

All plants not just show plants need to be groomed on a regular bases. With this page of my corner of the web you will get a quick lesson in grooming plants for show or just to look nice around the house. First, will be a list of equipment that you will need to assemble to do the grooming with and then next will be a step by step procedure to follow when grooming your plant. As with all of my pages there are photos of the item to better explain what I am referring to. As the saying goes "a picture is worth a thousand words".

Supplies:

Sponges Sponge PhotoThere is several different kinds, sizes, and prices of sponges available. There is several types of sponges that I use and like. I like to use a very well used ceramic sponge and a sea wool sponge which is a natural sponge. There are some that like to use a cosmetic or make up sponge though I have never tried them. I have a very well used and soft artificial sponge from my ceramic days, this is my main sponge. The second sponge that I like to use is a natural sea sponge, these I think are a little easier to find. The best place to purchase these is in the crafts department of Walmart, they are sold in a package containing different sizes and textures. The natural sponges will be still and hard but will very soften when soaked in water and will not damage your plants if used gently.

Soft Brush Either a small paint brush with very soft bristles or a cosmetic brush. Brush Photo Here we have blush travel brush. The bristles are so soft that they do not damage the leaves and it is short enough that it fits nicely into my travel grooming kit. I like to have a short one in a travel case for touch up at a show and little bigger long handled ceramic mop brush at home. The travel grooming kit is always packed and ready to go at any moment.

Tool A Tool to remove suckers - a ceramic cleaning Tool Photo tool is the best that I have found for removing suckers. The ceramic cleaning tool is a double ended tool. One end has a hooked blade that can be used for removing suckers. The opposite end is a flat blade that makes a fair cutting tool.

Bottle A small spray bottleBottle Photo with plain warm water that you have added one drop of dish detergent to. A second small spray bottle, either a different color or some how marked so you can tell it from the other one in this one we will have just plain warm water

Procedure:

Sucker plant that needs to be removed You might want to click on the image to the left for a larger photo of a sucker plant that needs to be removed. First thing that we need to do is to remove all the suckers with the ceramic cleaning tool. The little curved end works wonders for this. We also need to check and see if there is any remaining dead bloom stalks that we might have missed before. I like to use a small sharp pointed pair of scissors to do this.

With our brush we are going to remove any dust or foreign particles that may have settled on the leaves. When doing this it is best to support the leaf from underneath with the other hand.

Now that we have removed our suckers and any dust that might have drifted onto our leaves let's take the spray bottle that has the drop of detergent added and spray our plant. Spray the plant until it is fairly damp now settle back and let the detergent and water do it's job, that is loosen the dust and particles that we were unable to remove with the brush.

Now take the spray bottle with just plain water and lightly mist the plant once again, take the sea wool sponge that you have dampened and gently wipe the leaves of the plant to remove the moisture and dust. I like to keep a small bowl of warm water to rinse the sea wool sponge in between leaves. When the leaves have been cleaned allow to dry in a low light area to lessen the possibility of water spots.

That does it we now have one well groomed plant. Just remember do not put the plant back on the plant shelf under the lights until the leaves have totally dried, if they are not totally dry they may develop tiny brown spots

Good luck and enjoy your freshly groomed plant!!

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