Healthy Spring Cleaning.

For many of us, the best season of the year is spring. Spring easily brings to mind thoughts of warm air, green grass, the resumption of outdoor sports and yes, even spring cleaning.

For those of us who have actually experienced the thrill of spring cleaning, the image of a huge array of cleaning products, often with mysterious chemical ingredients, is not difficult to imagine.

Our stores display an amazing number of specialized cleaning items. Yet you can actually clean your home very thoroughly with a handful of non-hazardous cleaners and little bit of plain old elbow grease.

Favourite Green Cleaning Recipes

Window Cleaners

1. Club Soda: Fill a spray bottle with club soda. Spray mirrors and windows, and wipe dry. (The sodium citrate in the club soda is softer that tap water and will clean to a shine.)

2. Vinegar and Water:

Fill a spray bottle with equal parts vinegar and water. Use on windows and mirrors, chrome surfaces etc. (The vinegar smell disappears when dry.)

3. Rubbing alcohol: Fill a spray bottle with 1 cup rubbing (isopropyl) alcohol, 1 cup water and 1 tablespoon white vinegar. Spray on glass and other shiny surfaces. Wipe dry.

All-purpose Cleaners

1. Soft scrub:

Begin by mixing until smooth 1 2/3 cups baking soda with ½ cup liquid soap (pure soap, such as castile). Add ½ cup of water, stirring until well mixed. And then add in 2 tablespoons of white vinegar, stirring until smooth. Pour into a squeeze bottle (you can reuse an old ketchup or syrup bottle). Squeeze, scrub and rinse well.

2. General Cleaner

·< 15 mins 1/8 cup washing soda 1 tablespoon vegetable-oil based liquid soap 1/4 cup vinegar 2 gallons hot water Mix ingredients in a pail. Apply with mop or cloth and wipe clean. Air Fresheners 1. Indoor plants ? nature?s air purifiers. 2. Dissolve 1 tsp (5 ml) of baking soda in 2 cups (500 ml) of hot water, add 1 tsp (5 ml) lemon juice. Pour the solution into a spray bottle and spray as you would an air freshener. 3. Place a few slices of a citrus fruit, cloves or cinnamon in a pot with enough water to simmer gently for an hour or two. Drain Cleaner 1. Pour ½ cup (125 ml) baking soda down the drain, followed by ½ cup (125 ml) of vinegar. Let this foam and fizzle for about 15 minutes. Follow with a kettle full of boiling water. (Do not use this recipe if you have recently used corrosive drain cleaner on the drain.) 2.On stubborn clogs use a mechanical snake. For more Green Cleaning solutions contact the Waste Reduction Office at 1-888-689-6328,