Gardening should be fun, invigorating, and satisfying, not exhausting or overwhelming. These top 10 essentials are a gardener’s best friends, and help you enjoy a day in the garden free of toil and trouble.
Top 10 Essentials
- A good pair of pruners goes a long way. Instead of buying a junky pair to toss out at the end of every year, buy one good-quality pair and make it last a lifetime. ARS, Wolf Garten, Felco, and DeWit all make high-quality tools that will protect your hands and arms from unnecessary strain.
- A sun hat is essential for skin protection. We so often get caught up in our gardening tasks that we don’t even notice how sun burnt our face and neck is getting. A comfortable, wide-brimmed hat with a sturdy neck strap is worth every penny.
- Gardening gloves protect your hands from thorns, burs, slicing grass blades, skin irritants, stinging insects, dirt under the finger nails, and all kinds of other fun surprises. Save your manicure and a whole lot of clean up by wearing a nice pair of protective gloves.
- A hefty rubber trug can be used in endless ways. A great catch-all tote to carry around the garden so you don’t scatter your tools, sun hat, sweater, and other items all over the place. Use it to collect a pile of uprooted weeds, a pile of autumn leaves, or freshly divided perennials. Sprinkle compost from it. Water plants from it. Heck, it can even be used as a picnic basket or luggage!
- A 2-gallon watering can lets you water and fertilize containers and beds quickly and easily.
- A good all-purpose fertilizer. Plants require sun, water, and a variety of other nutrients to grow and thrive—including the three “macronutrients” nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, as well as small amounts of micronutrients like calcium or magnesium. If they’re not getting these key nutrients from the existing soil, they may not be able to develop healthy roots, stems, leaves, or flowers. An excellent general-purpose, slow-release fertilizer is North Country’s Pro-Gro 5-3-4 for broad-ranging application – trees, perennials, lawns, and more. We also love Coast of Maine’s all-purpose fertilizers, and the Plant-tone series.
- A sturdy trowel lets you loosen the soil and hand shovel a medium-sized hole. Perfect for planting, dividing or transplanting smaller plants like perennials, annual, and herbs.
- A sharp spade lets you hop onto it and use your heft and body weight to slice down into the soil, getting under the root ball to pop larger plants right out of the ground. Great for planting or uprooting shrubs and trees.
- A Cape Codder is basically an L-shaped claw on a handle that lets you scrape under a few inches of ground in order to uproot weeds. You claw through a section of soil, and then gather up all the decimated weeds into your trug. It makes for a quick and easy elimination method without too much work or nasty chemicals.
- A soil test lets you determine the current health and fertility of your soil, and better understand which plants will thrive there. We have easy-to-use Soilkit.com kits here. Take a few samples of your yard’s soil, send in the kit, and get your results back on an easy-to-understand dashboard. You’ll also get recommendations on how to amend and improve the quality of your soil.
In Our Garden Store
You can find all of these essentials and more in our Garden Store right now, and they also make great gifts for Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, and other special holidays.