Tuesday, April 13, 2010

garden tools

To garden efficiently one must have the right tools for the job. Again, I'm an 'anything-simple-easy-quick-cut-corners-wherever-I-can' kind of gal, so these are my time-saving, right hand, no. 1 tools all summer long.

The back-pack sprayer is a must for me and saves me HOURS of weeding. I usually use Roundup, a spray that kills anything green, so it MUST be used carefully. I spot-spray alot by putting the nozzle right on the plant and give it a shot of spray. Don't spray when it's windy as the wind will do what it does...blow it around! :)  It works best/quickest applied on a dry plant(s) and apply as needed. READ THE DIRECTIONS! :) It holds four gallons and is heavy - I put three in. Home Depot carries them and they're approx $70-80 but worth the investment.

If you're not to keen on that product, plain vinegar can be used. I did an experiment yesterday and came up with these results...
                                                            applied in the morning
this morning
Because this was an experiment, I don't know how the long term is...Roundup kills the root; it looks like vinegar kills the top plant first.

The yellow-handled snips I use a LOT...dead-heading, trimming, cutting flowers and it gets in tight places. I picked these up (I have two) years ago and don't know if they're still available. The green one is an EZKut and very useful in cutting heavier stems, such as roses and small twigs.

The blue gloves are my absolute favorites and I've tried many other kinds (or the locals, they can be bought at Gap Power). I think they're construction workers gloves and come twelve to a pack. The Boss gloves are for heavy construction work but are perfect for working with roses...the thorns can't pierce the tough fabric...another must-have. I also use them when I work with stones...they've saved many a banged up hand!

When I head out to the gardens to tweek 'em, I have my trusty shovel in one hand and a five gallon bucket in the other. Excellent, excellent tools to pretty up the beds!

The u-hoe is wonderful! When the little, pesky weeds come up, just take this tool and 'cut' it through the ground - a huge time-saver! It can be bought at Wal-Mart cheap, however, it's another tool that is worth paying more for as you'll use it a lot, so I'd look at other places such as speciality stores (again, for the locals, I think Good's carries them).

Hang your tools nearby - you can take your walk at a park! :) Mine are hanging a few steps from the door, hung on a simple board, nailed to the house wall, with small-headed nails to hang the tools. Fancy hanging is a personal choice.

An outdoor clock is really nice to have - hang it where you can see it from most of places you're working in.
I can see mine wherever I'm working in the back. Home Depot carries them, maybe Wal-Mart. 

A waste basket right inside the back door or which ever door is convenient saves lots of steps!

My secondary tool are these...

The garden rake is used for raking stones, spreading mulch...generally the heavier yard work. The hand rake is wonderful to reach in under shrubbery and smaller places. I use mine a lot.

I use the level for exactly that...to level birdbaths, pillars, columns...it all looks better standing straight and level.

The loppers and saw pruner do a great job in cutting off/trimming thicker branches. The lopper was bought at the Phila Flower Show and I don't know where one like this can be bought...again, it's a pricey tool but really, really worth it!

...happy gardening!


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