Disinfect plant pots for Reuse

Asked August 6, 2019, 10:07 AM EDT

I heard recently that bleach becomes ineffective in water solution after 10 hours. I use this to disinfect my pots for reuse. Do I need to make a new solution every 10 hours? What is the smallest amount of bleach needed to be effective?

New Castle County Delaware gardening bleach solutions cleaning pots

1 Response

Bleach becomes unstable in solution. an effective 1:9 solution lasts about one day. So your 10 hour rule of thumb is a good one. Prepare a solution sufficient for the job at hand and a new one for subsequent jobs. Remove mineral deposits and debris from pots using a scrubbing pad and water before disinfecting with the bleach solution. After using the bleach solution clean the pots with detergent in warm water, rinse and let dry. If you are cleaning clay pots which are porous, use steel wool or a wire brush to remove debris from pores and crevices before bleaching.