If you are lucky enough to have parents, or better yet grandparents who are gardeners, you have likely been the beneficiary of a slew of helpful garden tips. Even if you are a first generation gardener, it is very probable that you have some of your own garden tricks up your sleeve.
I have had the benefit of information passed down to me from previous generations. Some I take with a grain of salt and some have saved me and my plants. I’ve also come up with a few of my own tricks of the trade.
Three Secret Hacks
1. Have you ever noticed how garden tools are like chameleons? They have the uncanny ability to hide even when you think you’ve put them in an obvious place. The trick to locating your garden tools, besides putting them back where they belong, is to paint them.
When I say paint your garden tools, I mean get obnoxious! Paint the handle of your hoe hot pink or lipstick red. Voila! No more tools lost in the wilderness you refer to as the garden.
2. Another garden trick I can’t take credit for is labeling the raspberry canes for late winter pruning. It’s important to remove the dead canes to prevent disease spores that may overwinter. So these dead canes have a whitish, peeling bark that indicates removal. Instead of searching through a seas of canes we label them with neon pink (who knows where it came from) ribbon during the growing season. This makes them easy to cut at the base and remove without getting too scratched up as we’re rooting through the other brambles.
3. Lastly, garden trick number three arose due to my laziness. I don’t own a rototiller so the cultivation of compost into the soil to juice it up for the successive season used to mean I had to dig the amendment in. Oh my aching, old back!
Now my lazy self simply top dresses the garden bed with manure and then covers it with dry leaves and some grass that has been turned into mulch ala the lawn mower. I do this in the fall and then tada! by spring I have beautiful soil ready for planting. Yes, there is still a modicum of digging involved but the soil is turned as I am digging holes for transplants so it is much easier.
As you can see, most of my garden hacks have arisen from my somewhat slothful approach to gardening. I mean if I had just hung the garden tools back up I wouldn’t need to paint them, which in itself is additional work… hmm…