natural cleaning products

Undoubtedly, the greatest joy of growing your own garden is eating all the fresh food it produces. But there’s a catch: if you’re lucky enough to get a huge harvest, you might not be able to eat it all. After two weeks straight of fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice, your mouth might be getting a little too puckered. Or as much as you love lavender, you can’t possibly think of another recipe to use it in. That’s all okay: you don’t have to eat your garden crop in order to use it.

Many vegetables, fruits and other home-garden plants are highly effective household cleaners. They can help eliminate chemicals cleaners and save you money! Here are some of our favorite natural cleaning solutions:

  1. Chamomile, when made into a tea and cooled, works quite well as a fungicide.
  2. Cucumber insides brighten up stainless steel, and the peel can be an effective eraser on walls, tables and countertops.
  3. An orange studded with cloves helps keep moths out of your closet.
  4. Halved citrus, sprinkled with baking soda, is an excellent surface cleaner. Try it on counter tops and in the bathtub.
  5. A simple paste of lemon juice and cream of tartar polishes brass, aluminum and stainless steel.
  6. Lemon juice and water removes underarm stains from shirts by scrubbing with r. This mixture also brightens up white sneakers.
  7. Peppermint is a natural pest control: ants, mosquitoes and even rodents can’t stand it.
  8. Walnuts work as wood buffers: just rub the meat into wood scratches to make them less noticeable (we know it’s not an herb or plant but it works!).
  9. Distill your own herbs and use them as an all natural fungicidal and antiseptic spray (think: mold prevention). Mixed with a little water, borax or vinegar, you now have a natural disinfectant cleaner.

To make your own essential oils from mint, lavender, thyme, rosemary or whatever herb you find to be especially delicious-smelling, follow this simple recipe:

  • Chop your herbs.
  • Pack herbs into an airtight container.
  • Heat vegetable oil, olive oil, or a nut oil on the stove. Remove when it’s hot to the touch.
  • Pour the oil over the herbs.
  • When it’s cooled, store the mixture in a dark place for at least a week.
  • Strain the liquid into a spray bottle, and you’ve got essential oil!

Happy, healthy, cleaning!

(image via KOMUnews)