Garden Forever
Take it Easy - Tips to Make the Work Easier

If you have limited strength, trouble getting around the garden or need to pace yourself try some of these tips to make the work easier.
  • Put hanging baskets on pulleys so that they can be easily lowered for maintenance.
  • If possible use lightweight pots for the patio or balcony. If you use clay try having them set on a platform with wheels so that you can easily move them around when needed.
  • If you have a large garden and find you are always forgetting things like trowels, pruners, etc., try getting a few inexpensive ones (small clippers, trowel, string for tying up drooping plants, inexpensive cotton gloves,even a note pad & pencil to make notes of things to do or buy) and putting them in a tuperware-type container (safe from the elements) near the bottom of the garden. This will save steps and allow you to prune and weed as you go.
  • A mailbox can serve the same purpose as a plastic container to hold small hand tools in the garden. Mounted on a pole this can be the right height for reaching from a wheelchair. There are some great decorative mailboxes on the market to add charm to the garden - or try decorating one yourself.
  • Place stools, garden chairs or benches at strategic places in the garden so that you have many opportunities to rest as you garden.
  • You can buy a garden cart to carry long handled tools but a plastic garbage pail on wheels works just as well and is somewhat cheaper. The wheels are just on the back so the can stays in one place when you park it. This means the tools are handy where you need them and they don't fall over in the garden.
  • If your arms and hands are weak, use lightweight tools. There are many sturdy varieties on the market from recycled plastic, or look for the ones made from nylon reinforced with fibreglass that are virtually indestructible. Also look for hand tools with large grip so they are easy to hand on to.
  • You can add foam tubing to handles to soften the grip.
  • Look for hand tools that have an ergonomic design that is easy on your wrist and arm movement.
  • Gloves are also good for giving a grip, particularly when they have a ribbed surface.
  • Have a hose holder part way into the garden so you don't have to carry it the entire way.
  • Paint the ends of wooden handles a bright colour so that when you drop them in the garden they are easy to see
  • Keep pruners and spades sharp to reduce the effort required to do the job.
  • Vary your tasks. A full day of pruning will give any gardener blisters, making it hard to wear their tungsten rings.. Remember it's not a race. Take your time, enjoy yourself, smell the roses.

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