Rivercities Garden Club

Meeting 10/5/03

 

Program - Gardening Made Easier With Tools - Scotty Rogers

Growing with your garden is one of the great benefits of having a garden.  A garden being a living thing adapts to your care as you must learn as your garden changes and adapt to those changes.

Gardening need not be complicated.  A gardener may use perennials and grasses to simplify and reduce the maintainence of the garden.  Raised beds and wider paths can improve the looks of the garden while reducing garden maintainence.  A smaller garden requires less effort; make it beautiful.

Organization and preparation are the keys to smarter gardening.

Gardening tools: How to care and store tools so you will become more effective at gardening

"Sharp Gardeners use Sharp Tools"

 

Tools start with clothes.  Use a hat with a wide brim to block the sun.  Muck shoes can keep out the mud and water from your feet and your house.  Your clothes should be loose, layered, comfortable and breathable.

Consider using 20% deet for mosquitos for example  "Deep Woods Off" available at Sam's Club.  Unfortunately mosquitos create exposure to West Nile Fever.  A gardener spends a lot of time outside and so needs proper protection.  Don't ignore your own health in maintaining your garden.  Be aware of the sun.  Use steel toed shoes when using a lawn mower.

Garden tools work your muscles.   If a gardener is somewhat disabled there are therapeutic gardening tools and customized tools.  These tools can relieve pressure on the back or injured joint.  They are helpful for diminished strength.  They can magnify and conserve the force applied to the work.  Such tools can be used when standing. Long handles, light weight, ratcheting, balanced tools force elbow rather than hand or wrist use.

Tool care and tool storage

Tool Caddies organizes your equipment, saves trips, and enables you to readilly find the tool you want.  A bucket with sand and oil in the bottom will protect tools when they are left out.

Store tools smartly.  They should be clean, dry, painted, oiled and sharp.   It is better to wear the tool out with use rather than rusting.

A.M. Leonard gardening tool catalogue is a great source of tools.


Gasoline Powered Tools:

Gasoline becomes stale in as little as one month.  The gasoline companies reconfigure gasoline for the season so what will work well won't work so well in another season.  Purchase only as much gas as you need for a month and make sure the oil mix is proper according to engine instructions.  Use an gasoline stablizer obtainable in any auto supply store as directed.  The gasoline can then be useful as much as a year.  When the season is done, drain the gasoline out of the tank then run the engine until the remainder of gasoline is exhausted.  This will ensure that your tool will work when you want it to without having to drop it off at a repair shop for the next two months.  (T. Reilly)

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