Do you know that you can do more with your fruit and veg?

It may seem strange to us in these days of chemical power cleaners, but cleaning with fruit and veg has been a thing for a long time – and it’s making a come-back as we all look for more planet-friendly ways of living. In my Nurtured by Nature community, we learn about making more natural choices in our cleaning products that are healthier for us and for the planet.

So, if you are looking for other ways to clean your house using environment-friendly ingredients here are some of my recommendations:

Lemon – the citric acid in lemon means that it not only cuts through grease but leaves the surface shiny and it can act as a mild bleach too. Run a lemon cut in half over your sink or bath to remove stains. Make a paste with bicarbonate of soda and lemon juice to scour surfaces.

Cucumber – while the skin can be rubbed on crayon marks to get them off walls, try cleaning your bathroom mirror with cucumber juice so that it doesn’t get fogged up next time you have a shower!

Onions – next time you need to tackle your oven with burnt-on stains, just heat it up to low heat, grab a half onion and rub it all over. You can spear the onion with a fork to reach further into the cooker. The onion contains enzymes that react with the oxygen in the air to create an acid that can help to dissolve the grease and grime.

Walnuts – use the cut end of a walnut as an excellent polish. The oils in the nut make your wood come up to a great shine. Simply run the walnut all over your wood, especially concentrating on any nicks, and then buff up afterward.

Banana – the inside of the banana skin makes a great polish, particularly for plant leaves where it not only takes away dust but moisturises the leaves and makes them really shiny and healthy. Use on large, tough leaves like yucca, orchids, and cheese plants.

Rhubarb – if your old pans are looking rusty or dull, simply boil up rhubarb in them and leave to simmer. Rhubarb contains oxalic acid which will leach into the water and leave your pans shiny and clean.

Peppermint – deter spiders and other house pests by making up a spray of peppermint – which they hate! Simply add some drops of peppermint essential oil into a small bottle with a spray cap. Fill to the brim with vodka and shake well before spraying. Avoid wooden surfaces.

Grapefruit – containing citrus acid like other fruits in the citrus family, grapefruit is a great way to clean larger surfaces where a lemon would struggle. Just take half a grapefruit and run it all the way around your bath before rinsing off. The fresh, clean scent also makes your bathroom smell delicious.

Thyme – a great disinfectant, you can use thyme in any spray bottle to create your own multipurpose anti-bacterial cleaner. Simply add several sprigs to a bottle, top up with vodka and leave to infuse. You can also add lemon peel and other antibacterial herbs like rosemary and lavender to create a scent that you love.

Orange – the peel of the orange makes a delicious, scented cleaner when paired with apple cider vinegar. Simply add the peels to a jar of apple cider vinegar, leave for 2 weeks and then strain the liquid into a spray bottle. Use as an all-purpose spray in your kitchen. The vinegar will help to shine up all your surfaces.

I love learning new ways to make my cleaning cupboard more natural. If you have any favourite recipes to share, I’d love to know!