Spring cleaning the house cleaning is always a chore, I’m not sure that anyone enjoys it. One thing we need to do though is to keep the house clean especially after it has been closed up all winter. The point is to remove things that might cause illness, reduce the likelihood of moulds growing and circulate air through the house.
The first thing we do on a good enough day is to crack open the windows a little bit. Get the air circulating and clean the house as much as we are able to. We don’t use household cleaners that you may buy in supermarkets. Except for bleach for the toilet bowl and keeping our straining clothes clean and bleaching dish rags etc. The spring cleaning commences!
We tend to use herbs and natural things for spring cleaning our house. These don’t have the chemicals of store-bought cleaning products. They also have the added benefit of more esoteric properties of house cleaning. We include plants in the formulations such as Thyme, Mugwort, Wormwood, Rosemary and Juniper. All are used to get rid of spirits or what folks might call “bad vibes”, negative energy or what have you in the formulations. They also smell really earthy. I love that smell and suit what I like my spring cleaning products to smell like. So double bonus really.
They not only smell great but help to also spring clean your house physically too, not just metaphysically.
- Thyme is a great anti bacterial and antiviral along with Lavender.
- Mugwort and Wormwood are great insect deterrents.
- Rosemary and Juniper are both great antibacterial and germ killings herbs.
There has been some limited research done on the ability of the smoke of some of these herbs to reduce airborne pathogens. It’s interesting. A lot of these herbs were used a long time ago in hospital settings and burnt to remove “sickness”, such as Juniper. All these herbs mentioned also have the same reputation as protective “magical” herbs too. They can be used in many different ways by folk practitioners to protect from ill will. You can see why they had this reputation and its relates to their germ killing properties.
I have included below some recipes that you can use to bring some herbal spring cleaning to your house.
Rug and upholstery strewing powder
• 2 cups of Borax (or baking powder if you don’t have borax)
• I tablespoon of Lavender flowers
• 1 tablespoon of wormwood
• 2 tsp of peppermint
• (Finely grind all the above herbs)
• 1 tsp of lavender EO
(If you have pets that have had fleas 1/4 cup of fine sea salt)
Mix all the ingredients together (it should turn green and leave overnight for the Essential Oil to mix fully in).
Directions of use.
Sprinkle onto rugs, mattresses and upholstery and leave for at least 8 hours and the clean off.
Basic Floor Wash
• 1 gallons of water
• 1 oz Wormwood
• 1/2 oz of Pine needles
• 1/2 oz Rosemary
• You can add essential oil of Mugwort here. No more than 15 drops.
Boil water and add herbs. Leave to decoct for an hour. Strain and use with a mop.
Thyme General purpose spray (Mould Killer)
Notes: This can smell a little vinegary. It isn’t to everyone’s liking as it smells quite strong. Use sparingly when you use it, unless you have some really bad mould issues to deal with. You can also dilute the below with clear alcohol (like the cheapest vodka) to 1 part of each if it does smell to strong for you.
• 1 later of white vinegar
• 1 oz of thyme
• Essential oil Thyme 20 drops.
• Essential Oil Lavender 20 drops
Make as you would a tincture but leave for only 3 weeks to infuse in the vinegar. It will change to a reddish colour. Do not leave this in contact with metal, the vinegar will react with it and ruin the cleaning products.
Once infused. Strain and put into a plastic spray bottle. And add the Essential oils. Use on glass or surfaces. It can also be used to kill mould and mildew by spraying on it directly.
Herbal Surface Scrub
A scrub for stuff that needs a good cleaning action, like grimy bathtubs or cooking rings etc.
• 1 part (1/2 cup) baking powder
• 1 part (1/2 cup) borax (we sometimes leave this out so increase the baking powder 2 two parts)
• 1/2 (1/4 cup) part salt
• To each 1 cup of the mixture (assume the above makes around 1 cup). Add 1/2 tsp of Juniper essential oil to 1/2 tsp of clear alcohol and mix together with the above.
Sprinkle around the surface to be cleaned. Clean with a sponge rubbing it into the surface as you go. You can also use this on gas rings etc. to lift the dirt. Clean off with water.
There’s plenty more things you can do with cleaning products like this now you know the basics. You can add what you feel you’d like to add and play around with these ideas. Make the “Spring cleaning” your own herbal celebration of what you might have grown in your garden. you might also be interested in other spring cleaning for your body.