The longest day has finally arrived, heralding the start of high summer. The sun has been shining, and the gardens are looking glorious. However, with summer comes the hard work of keeping the garden looking at its seasonal best. Lots of watering, weeding and watching out for bugs are required, along with a well-stocked shed, full of essential gardening tools to keep the borders and containers colourful all summer long.
6 Essential Gardening Tools
If a bad worker always blames their tools, it stands to reason that a good worker will want to equip themselves with the very best tools for the job. Here are six gardening must-haves and ways to get the best out of them over the next few months.
Everyone knows that plants need water to survive as much as humans do. In the summer, there can be days in between rainfall and plants can start to wilt very rapidly. Watering plants is more than just dumping a load of water on top of them and hoping for the best. Maintaining good amounts of moisture in the soil is key, as is watering thoroughly, but less often than you might think – in normal summer conditions, once or twice a week is sufficient.
Choosing a good quality hosepipe will make your life much easier when planning your watering schedule, as it will last longer and perform better. Check out the clever hosepipe attachments from Kink Out, to help prolong the lifespan of your hosepipe and avoid the irritation of having to unbend kinks in the tubing to allow the water to pass through.
Kink Out is the splint for hosepipe. Bending or ceases in the hosepipe blocks the water flow. Kink out is the perfect product for these kinds of bends and ceases. It does not cause the hosepipe to bend, stop or slow down water pressure. Here is a guide on how to use it.
2. Gardening Gloves
It is all too easy to just nip out and do some ‘quick jobs’ in the garden without stopping to pull on the gloves. However, even a short time of gardening can lead to nasty pricks, stings and nips from sneaky plants waiting to pounce. A sturdy pair of gloves is one of the most essential gardening tools, as they protect against horticultural dangers like rose thorns – often concealed behind an abundance of rose blooms at this time of year. Other potentially painful plants include stinging nettles and prickly pyracantha, while other attacks can come from sharp pebbles, wood splinters and broken pieces of flower pots.
3. Garden Fork or Spade
When the sun shines down onto the garden and the morning dew leaves glistening droplets on flower petals, inspiration can quickly strike. Having a sturdy garden spade on hand is vital when you want to dig out a new flower border or make room for a new fruit tree to put down effective roots. A fork is also a common entry on lists of essential garden tools for aerating the soil, raking out moss in the lawn and preparing the ground for late summer bulb planting sessions.
4. Pruning Secateurs
Early evening pruning and light dead-heading sessions can be pure joy for gardeners with the right tools and some sharp secateurs that are comfortable to hold will do the job nicely. Secateurs can help you remove light branches from shrubs and small trees, as well as reshape bushes, cut flowers for indoor display and cut back overgrowth in borders or containers. A decent pair of pruning secateurs is definitely one of the most essential gardening tools for gardeners who are keen to keep the garden looking gorgeous, neat and tidy all summer long.
If you are a keen grower of fruit, veg or herbs, or like to collect fresh flowers for indoors or to give to friends as gifts, the best way to collect them and transport them safely from garden to final destination is via a trug. This shallow, yet heavy-duty receptacle can sit by your side and be filled with your very own produce. It can also take plenty of weeds and debris to help you keep your garden tidy as you go, as well as store your smaller essential gardening tools such as secateurs, gloves, hosepipe attachments and trowels until you need them.
Finally, we are all being encouraged to lead more sustainable lives. Growing your own produce is a wonderful way to do this, as is creating a compost heap to nourish future plants. An easy way to set up your compost heap is by using a composter. This is a large container that accepts decomposing plant matter and provides the optimum conditions for it to turn into compost over time.
Not only does adding a composter to your garden help you keep more organic waste away from landfills, but it also gives you a designated place to store grass clippings, dead-heads and more until they can be returned to the soil as nutrient-rich compost. Adding compost to your garden will help keep it fed, hydrated and healthy right through till autumn.