How to tackle grass stains on clothing

You can be sure these clothes are going to have grass stains on them by the end of the day (
You can be certain this kid’s outfit is going to have grass stains on it by the end of the day. (

If you enjoy spending time outdoors in the summer, you know that nature inevitably leaves its mark on your clothes in the form of unsightly, hard-to-clean grass stains.

You can blame chlorophyll, the chemical that gives plants their green hue, for ruining your favourite pair of jeans. In addition to being a strong dye, chlorophyll binds well with natural fibres, making it notoriously difficult to remove.

While delicate materials like silk or wool should always be handled by a professional dry cleaner, denim and cotton clothes can benefit from grass cleaning solutions you can make at home. The basic steps are similar in each case:

Note: Some cleaners can fade or discolour clothing. Always “spot test” cleaners on an inconspicuous location before applying it to the stain.

Step 1: Give the stain a hot water bath. Run the stain under hot water, preferably using a high-pressure nozzle. This will remove any solid grass pieces and loosen the stain. For best results, you should clean the stain as soon as possible to keep it from setting.

Step 2: Scrub the stain with detergent. Any liquid detergent will do. Use a scrub brush or a toothbrush and thoroughly scrub the affected area, then rinse.

Step 3. Apply a cleaning agent. There are literally dozens of products that claim to remove grass stains, but the simplest and most cost-effective home remedy is a mixture of baking soda and white vinegar. Sprinkle baking soda on the stain, then pour the vinegar over top and scrub the mixture while it fizzes.

Step 4: Launder in warm or hot water. Most denim clothing can handle your washer’s hot water cycle, while cotton clothes can be washed in warm water. Just in case, you should always follow the washing instructions on the label. Wash with detergent as normal.

If the stain persists after step 4, don’t put the clothing in the dryer – this will cause the stain  to set. Instead, repeat steps 3 and 4 using “harsher” cleaners, starting with rubbing alcohol and then progressing to chlorine bleach. You can also try natural digestive enzymes, which are available at most health food stores. Mix the contents of several enzyme capsules in lukewarm water until you get a mixture with the consistency of toothpaste. Scrub the mixture into the stain and let it sit for 20 minutes, then repeat step 4.

5 must-have cleaning products for your backyard

The Grillbot is a single-button-operated, automated grill cleaner that takes the ick out of scrubbing your gas or charcoal BBQ. (Photo courtesy
  I know, it’s hard to imagine right now. But some day soon, all that snow will disappear, leaving you with a backyard’s worth of cleaning jobs. Luckily, technology can step in to fill the enthusiasm gap. Add these five outdoor cleaning products to your arsenal, and you’ll be ready for your first backyard patio party in no time. The Grillbot (photo above): The brainchild of former real estate agent Ethan Woods, the Grillbot is a single-button-operated, automated grill cleaner that takes the ick out of scrubbing your gas or charcoal BBQ. The Grillbot’s three motorized scouring brushes are powered by rechargeable battery pack, and its “smart CPU” brain allows it to navigate grills with ease. Now if only we could teach it to cook the perfect steak… (US$69,95 basic model, US$99.95 premium model, available starting June 2013, Quickie Bulldozer Super Stiff Broom: Appearances can be deceiving; the Quickie Bulldozer is designed to look like indoor kitchen broom, but its industrial grade steel handle and super-stiff polypropylene fiber bristles can sweep up crushed brick, block, rebar, landscape stones and other punishing objects with ease. ($8.88, available at Home Depot)   CLR Outdoor Furniture Cleaner: CLR’s non-abrasive, biodegradable formula is perfect for cleaning your patio furniture after a long winter break. But don’t stop there; CLR is safe to use on a variety of surfaces, from wrought iron to plastic to canvas, so go nuts. ($6.99 for 26 oz., available at Canadian Tire)   Craftsman/mD 22″, 190cc B&S 725 Platinum Series Rear Wheel Drive Lawn Mower: Adjustable self-propelled drive system? Check. Easy push-button start? Check. Simplified bag removal system with full bag indicator? Check. This gas-powered mover by Craftsman is the total lawn care package.  ($549.88, available at Sears)   Jackson Clog-Free Rake: When is a rake more than a rake? When it’s designed to prevent debris from getting stuck between the tines, that’s when. The Jackson Clog-Free Rake comes with a lifetime warranty – because you know the leaves will never stop falling. ($24.99, available at Canadian Tire)

How to remove grass stains from clothing

It’s summer, the sun is out and it’s time to send your kids outside for an outdoors adventure. Don’t worry what state their clothes will come back in – Goldstar Cleaning Services’ guide to removing grass stains from clothing will stop you spending your whole summer doing laundry. 1. Soak Try to keep the grass stain wet until you have the materials and time to clean it. Heat will ‘seal’ the grass stain and may halt any chance of removing it completely, so make sure you inspect the clothing after washing before you hang it out in the sun or stick it in the dryer. If the grass stain is still visible, soak and consider dropping it off at Goldstar Cleaning Services Drycleaning Depot at 1591 10th Ave, Fernie for treatment by Prestige Dry Cleaning. 2. Common household stain busters Apply rubbing alcohol to the grass stain to try to loosen it, leave for 15 minutes then wash with your usual  detergent. You can also apply a paste of equal parts baking soda and vinegar and rub into the fabric with your fingers – the fizzing action should help loosen the grass stain. 3. A sweet way to clean leather shoes Believe it or not, molasses will ‘draw out’ grass stains on your white leather running shoes (or any leather item). Massage a good dollop into the leather, leave overnight and wash the shoes with warm water and a gentle soap. 4. Prevention will save a lot of scrubbing Let kids be kids without worrying about how you will remove the grass stains, and send them out to play soccer in clothes that won’t cause you a lot of extra laundry. Grass stains are less likely to stain manmade fabrics than natural fibres such as cotton, and dark colours show the stains less than light. 5. Know when to hand it over to the professionals Goldstar Cleaning Services is a depot for Prestige Dry Cleaning – drop off and pick up items at 1591 10th Ave, Fernie. You need to get grass stains professionally dry cleaned if: • You have tried one of the stain removers above, washed it as normal and the stain is still there. • The item is fragile or is marked dry clean only. Get it checked professionally as soon as possible after the stain is caused – the longer you wait, the more likely the stain will not be removable.