Using chlorine bleach around plants is sometimes necessary when completing cleaning and disinfecting projects around your home. Because of its high cleaning and disinfecting power, chlorine bleach can also be harmful when not handled properly around plants. When small amounts of diluted chlorine bleach are introduced to plants, it can actually be beneficial. However, if large amounts are absorbed by plants, the chlorine bleach can affect the mineral absorption of the plants, thus causing plant death.
Dilute the chlorine bleach before use. For proper disinfecting without killing plant life, add 1 tbsp. per 1 quart of water.
Cover any outdoor plants using plastic garbage bags or plastic sheeting when working with a chlorine bleach product around them. To prevent any accidental bleach exposure to the plants, do any projects that require the use of bleach on a driveway or distant part of your lawn where landscaping won't be affected.
Use a hand-pump garden sprayer to use pure chlorine bleach as a weed killer. Other spraying methods, such as garden hoses with a spraying attachment, risk over-spraying the chlorine bleach onto landscaping plants.