How to Properly Clean Your Flower Pots

Written by Contributor. Posted in Featured, Home & Garden

Published on March 25, 2020 with No Comments

It’s very important to start out with clean flower pots when you’re planting a container garden, but it’s probably something that many of us forget to do most of the time. Dirty pots can contain pests, bacteria, and fungus that can hurt your flowers and keep them from getting a good start. Even if you use fresh potting mix and really healthy looking plants from a good garden center, leftovers in your pots from last year can ruin the whole thing.

I have to admit that I’ve definitely neglected to clean my pots in the past and I’ve suffered the consequences when flowers in certain pots just wouldn’t thrive even when others nearby were growing bigger by the minute. It’s my goal for this year to clean out every single pot by the end of the fall when the growing season is done and I decided to start right away with some pots that had spring flowers in them that I recently emptied. Don’t worry if you run out of time and don’t get your pots all perfectly-cleaned in the fall. You can definitely clean them just as well in the spring before you plant too!

So here’s how to clean your pots!

Start out by emptying your pots. It doesn’t matter if they’re clay, resin, cement, or plastic, they can all be cleaned this same way. Use a stiff nylon-bristled brush to remove as much of the dirt clinging to the sides as possible. I have a grout brush that I use just for this purpose and it works really well.

Next fill up a sink with warm soapy water and add in about a cup of vinegar. Use your stiff brush to wash out your pots, just like you’re washing the dishes. If you’re doing larger pots, you can clean them outside in a big tub of water. A big plastic storage tote makes a great “sink” for this purpose.

When you’ve removed all of the dirt and debris, wipe the pots out really well to make sure you get everything out. I like to use a microfiber cloth because it really picks up everything and it’s been shown to remove 99% of bacteria with just water. Bacteria removal is just what I’m going for here!

Finally, let your pots dry in the sun and put them away somewhere safe and clean until you’re ready to plant!



What can I use to clean the leaves of my house plants?


Use a soft washcloth with a bit of warm water and mild soap to gently rub the tops and undersides of the leaves. This will remove any grime and also keep any pests from inhabiting your plants. Just be sure to use another washcloth with plain water afterward to rinse off most of the soap.

How do I make my plant leaves shiny?

Easily whip up a homemade leaf shine by mixing equal parts milk and water or equal parts mayonnaise and water in a small bowl or use a tiny amount of straight mayo. Cover your fingertip with a clean cloth, dip it in your chosen brew and gently burnish the entire surface of each leaf top.


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