Cleaning the polytunnel and your pots
Not the most popular of tasks but one that must be faced to avoid pests and diseases later. All plant pots, seed trays, propagation trays and tools should be well and truly cleaned. Don’t brush over this advice because you think they are going to “get dirty” anyway. Pots that are dirty can contain pests, bacteria, and fungus that can harm your plants before they even get started. Same is true for your glasshouse or polytunnel. As well as letting in extra light you will get rid of all the overwintering red spider mites, aphids and other pests. Get rid of all old plant matter and debris – pay close attention to anywhere that debris can build up. Remove all the ‘might come in useful’ rubbish that you have accumulated and start the year with a fresh, clean space.
How to clean pots
Brush out all debris with a stiff brush and wash with detergent (Ecover of similar) and warm water. Rinse and put out in the fresh air to dry. Can also use a jet spray hose pipe attachment to make things a bit quicker.
How to clean a polytunnel
This is best done on a nice soft day so that the algae is already a bit lose. Using a hose pipe and one of those long brushes for cleaning vans and lorries slowly work your way along the tunnel – better to do this quite regularly rather than once a year.
Good results can also be obtained by tying a hose pipe to a long handled soft brush.
You can also soak an old sheet in warm soapy water and throw it over the tunnel – then with a friend saw you way down the tunnel to get rid of the algae.
The inside can be cleaned with a sponge and warm water. Good idea to clean water butts as well.
Safety first! – if you are up on a step ladder be careful, especially if you are cleaning a glass house.