How to Shine Plant Leaves

How do I make then leaves of my houseplants like a snake plant or ficus shiny? My friend suggested milk or mayonnaise.

Hi Suzy,

No matter what anyone suggests, NEVER use milk or mayonnaise to shine plant leaves! Both of those attract insects and often clog the pores in the plant leaves. You can wash the dust from the leaves with a mild soapy solution; I use a biodegradable liquid soap like ivory. Once the leaves are clean, there are numerous professional leaf shine products that you can use to make the leaves “shiny.” You can purchase leaf shine products at any garden center or on the internet. If your plant is poisonousPlants are a great addition to homes and offices, but it’s important to know whether your plants are dangerous to children, pets, or even adults. Some plants contain chemicals such as oxalates, solanine, glycosides, or alkaloid lycorine that may cause vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, swelling and redness of the mouth, throat, and lips, and trouble breathing. Touching parts of certain plants, especially the sap, may cause various skin irritations. The weight and age of the human or pet involved, and the part and amount of plant eaten determine how severe the reaction to the toxins will be. Although plants may be listed as non-toxic, they can still cause individual allergic reactions. If there is any question after a houseplant has been ingested or touched, immediately call the Poison Control Center 1-800-222-1222.  More poisonous houseplant information and pictures of common plants that are dangerous to children and pets can be found in my book Don’t Feed Me to Your Cat: A Guide to Poisonous Houseplants, like this beautiful Chinese evergreen Red Siam Aurora, be sure to wear gloves.