Care for Faux Succulent Designs
Dust and Sticky are the Real Killers
If, and when, the arrangement collects a substance (grease, hairspray, sticky materials) that causes the dust to stick to the leaves, try using glass cleaner. Spray it on the plants until it runs off, hopefully removing much of the grime with it. Follow by spraying water on the plants until it runs off, removing the glass cleaner. Place somewhere warm, where it will dry rapidly. When a design is so dusty and dirty there is little hope, a 'spray bath' may be just what it needs to perk up - and if it doesn't work it isn't a great loss. (There are commercial silk cleaners on the market. In 40 years I have used a wide variety, with limited success. If you try one, test it on a small area first. I also have not been impressed with ones that are not liquid and therefore "dissolve" the dust - is this really possible??? It did not appear to be when I tried them.)
Glossy Wood Tone
If your design seems beyond redemption, Design Master makes a paint called Glossy Woodtone that can work magic. It is a transparent, glossy spray with a touch of brown. If your succulents have faded and can’t be revived with simply cleaning, try a light coat of Glossy Wood Tone over the entire arrangement – you may be pleasantly surprised at how great it looks.
If placing plants outside, it is most important to keep them out of the sun which will degrade the materials, causing them to fade and eventually disintegrate. If you don't mind replacing them every year or two, they can be placed anywhere and will look 'ok' at the end of summer, even in the sun. We have had customers report keeping their succulent arrangement outside for several years without serious deterioration. A little bit of water (rain or sprinklers) won't drastically harm them, but it can cause wires to rust and affect some of the materials - so in general keep them dry.
Overall, faux succulent designs require little care if dusted on a regular basis and kept in a dry area, free of direct sun. While all the above instructions are generally successful, it is always best to test any process using liquid on a small area before proceeding.
* Use a blow dryer or canned air to remove dust.
* Use a damp rag to wipe off large leaves (be cautious not to remove factory-installed chalky substances that are meant to enhance the look of the plant).
* Use a paint brush to remove dust in the plant crevices and off leaves.
* Use glass cleaner and water to wash a complete design.
* Keep succulents out of the sun.
* Don't place in a sunny window, especially one that is hot, such as a south facing window.
* Keep dry.
Try Design Master Glossy Woodtone as a last-ditch effort to save a ‘dying’ design.
While all the above instructions are generally successful, it is always best to test any process using liquid on a small area before proceeding.
Succulents, like all artificial plants, need a little TLC to insure their longevity. The following instructions are for succulents in designs, which are not easily removable for cleaning individually.
Dust Off with Air, Paintbrush, Cloth
The first, and best step in care is to keep the dust from collecting. Use canned air or a blow dryer to blow the dust off. Hold either tool far enough away so as not to move the materials out of position - or literally blow parts of the design out of the container. A paint brush also works well to remove dust, especially down in the crevices, however it doesn't work well on mosses, lichens and other fragile materials. Succulents with large leaves, such as a paddle plant can be wiped off with a damp cloth. However, this last method should not be used for succulents with a powdery-like coating because washing may remove the coating.