Gardening Improvisation Tips

Solve gardening problems and make your gardening experience easier.
Digging Demands Patience

Digging Demands Patience

Tip: A light coat of floor or car wax on your metal shovel will help help keep mud from sticking to it, making digging much easier work.

Photo by: DK - Learn to Garden © 2008 Dorling Kindersley Limited

DK - Learn to Garden , 2008 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Tip: A light coat of floor or car wax on your metal shovel will help help keep mud from sticking to it, making digging much easier work.

Little tips and tricks here and there can make gardening easier. Master gardener Paul James offers suggestions to help solve some of your gardening problems:

Make shoveling easier.
Shoveling is hard work, but it's often even harder when clay soil sticks to the shovel, forcing you to stop and scrape off the clay. The solution? Rub a light coat of floor or car wax over the metal surface with a cloth and buff lightly. Waxing also prevents rust from forming and even prevents snow from sticking to snow shovels. 

Protect your mower. Apply a light coat of wax to your mower's metal and plastic surfaces and buff well with a clean, dry cloth. The wax will protect the mower from the elements and prevent grass clippings and dirt from sticking to it, which makes cleanup a breeze. 

Keep track of long-handled tools when working in the garden. Cut a 4- to 6-inch wide piece of PVC pipe to a length of about four feet. In an out-of-the-way spot in or near your garden, dig a hole with a post-hole digger about a foot deep. Place the pipe in the hole and pack soil around it. Put your tools in the pipe, and you'll always know where they are. You can also paint the pipe brown or green to blend in with its surroundings. To keep leaves out of the pipe when you're not working in the garden, top off the pipe with a PVC cap.

Make a tool carrier. Use an old golf bag to carry long-handled tools to and from the garden. Some golf bags have a built-in stand, which makes grabbing tools a breeze. You can use the pockets on the bag to hold all sorts of gardening items as well as various refreshments. Use a bucket or basket to carry hand tools.

Make an old rain gauge easy to read from a distance
. Just add a few drops of food coloring. Each time you empty the gauge, add a few fresh drops and occasionally change the color. 

Make bulb-planting easier. To remember where you want to plant spring-flowering bulbs in the fall or early winter, first determine exactly where you want the bulbs to go. Then dig individual planting holes at the proper spacing for the bulb you have in mind. Place four-inch plastic pots in the holes up to their rims, and fill each with the excavated soil. Next fall, planting will be as simple as removing each pot, placing a bulb in the hole, and covering the hole with soil in the pot. Make sure you plant the pots so that they are barely above soil level so you won't run over them with the lawnmower. This is a great way to ensure that next year you will get those bulbs in the ground on time.

Keep Reading

Next Up

14 Simple Gardening Tips and Tricks

From using leftover coffee beans to preventing dirt from getting underneath fingernails, master gardener Paul James shares his top 14 tips and shortcuts to make spring gardening a breeze.

Tips for Watering Lawns and Gardens

Without adequate water, plants will suffer and eventually die. Supplies can run short as rapidly growing plants draw up moisture from the soil. It's important to know what to water and how.

Tips for Watering Your Garden

Keep your garden hydrated and healthy with these simple ideas for watering your plants.

Tips for a Raised-Bed Vegetable Garden

Raised-bed vegetable gardening takes very little space and allows vegetables to be grown closer together.

How to Plant in Gardening Containers

To ensure that plants in gardening containers grow and perform as well as possible, you need to plant them properly.


Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.