Nothing can be rewarding as a day working in the garden-it is a chance to be in touch with nature, to work with your hands and to see the fruits of your labor blooming and ripening before your very eyes. Here are 11 helpful gardening tips for pocket, windowsill, full-scale, or any-sized gardens.
• Cutting tips. Before cutting tall, damp grass, spray the cutting blade of the lawn mower with vegetable oil spray, so wet grass won’t stick. Be sure blades are sharp. Dull blades will rip rather than clip the grass and cause leaf tips to turn brown. Great State push-reel mower and Rust-resistant Hedge Shear are both ideal for small lawns since they are lightweight and easy to use.
• Organize. Hang a removable tote basket from the handle of the mower. You can either fill this with debris as you go along or use it as storage for your garden tools, so you save time and effort while mowing.
• Say goodbye to grass and weeds. A more practical solution than an afternoon of mowing and weeding is to sprinkle salted boiling water on unwanted weeds. This effectively kills grass or weeds growing between sections of cement walk.
• Nuisance control. To keep screws from loosening and vibrating noisily on power motors, apply some weather strip-sealer to the ends of screws. The screws will hold tight, but may easily be removed when necessary.
• The right way to water. When it comes to watering your lawn, bear in mind that a little water is worse than none at all. So don’t even start the job unless the ground is going to be drenched and the soil is wet at least an inch below the surface. The reason? Light watering causes the roots of grass to turn up and become shallow. A thorough watering once a week does a lot of good, while light watering every few days a lot of harm.
• New tricks for old hoses. Punch a few more holes in it and turn it into a “lawn soaker” or an instant sprinkler.
• Easier toting. Keep your garden hose coiled in a stackable storage cart. It will be easier to carry around, and you can store the hose in it too.
• Marked to measure. Inches marked off on your garden trowel with red paint or nail polish conveniently shows proper depth for planting seeds and bulbs.
• Easy handling. Paint the handles of all your garden tools in a bright color so you can easily se them. If anyone borrows your tools, the color will be also a reminder for them to return it to you.
• Keep your tools in tip-top shape. Tools won’t rust easily if you leave them in a box of sand mixed with old motor oil. Better yet, always clean, sharpen and oil your most-used gardening tools before storing.
• For pocket gardens. When repotting plants, always choose a pot that is not more than two inches larger in diameter than the old pot. Blooming plants should be repotted after they have blossomed, not before.
To help reduce the shock of repotting plants, give the new soil a thorough watering. Clay pots should be soaked in water for a few minutes before using. This prevents for the clay from absorbing moisture from the potting soil.