Pressure washing is an easy way to get your home, office building, deck, driveway or other outside surfaces looking their best. However, the cleaning chemicals used in pressure washers can be a bit tough on your plants. You may see brown spots develop on leaves after plants are exposed to dripping from a pressure wash. You may even have plants that do not survive. Here are some ways to protect your plants.
Sturdy plants can be covered with trash bags, plastic containers or covers specifically made for plants. This protects them from the drainage and drips of pressure washing.
Keep plants covered only as long as you have to for their own protection. Being covered is not ideal for plants, so only cover those plants in immediate danger and uncover them as soon as the cleaning is over.
Some pressure washing professionals, such as Best Choice Pressure Cleaning and Landscaping, will cover your plants with plastic sheets as part of their services.
Use your garden hose to thoroughly water down the foliage in the yard or under the area that is going to be washed. If leaves are wet, the cleaning solution in the pressure washer is more diluted and will run off your plants more easily.
After the pressure washing session, rinse plants once more. Make sure you are thoroughly rinsing all the leaves because any soap that stays can cause a problem.
If you are particularly concerned, you can rinse plants at regular intervals during the session as well.
Be aware that you cannot easily rinse sealant materials off of your plants. If your pressure washing involves a sealant, you will need to take further steps to keep plants safe.
Some plants are easily transported from one place to another. If you can, dig up your plants and keep them in containers until the pressure washing is over.
Check the Cleaner
Be sure you know what types of cleaning chemicals and other additives are being used to pressure wash your property. There are environmentally friendly and biodegradable cleaners that are much less dangerous to your plants than a harmful detergent would be. Some pressure washers can also use a diluted bleach mixture, which is usually not harmful to nearby plants.
Pressure washing treatments can make a home or other outside surface look its best. However, plants are sometimes the unintended victims of this cleaning process. Plan to protect your plants when you use a pressure washer.