Gardening is one of the best hobbies you could ever take on. Taking care of plants provides us with lots of benefits that are sure to improve our overall health. However, we have to ensure that we know how to take care of ourselves and our gardening tools. This will guarantee that we don’t suffer from injuries or diseases brought by this activity. Don’t worry. This article will help you out!
Safety Precautions When Gardening
Gardening is a low-impact activity, but be that as it may, there’s no denying that there are still specific risks involved in this hobby. For this reason, you must follow safety precautions whenever you’re in your garden.
Always wear gloves when conducting different garden maintenance tasks. This will help prevent injuries and blisters and keep your hands safe from pesticides, fungi, or bacteria.
You may think that some tasks can be done by just arching your back to reach below. The problem is, this can cause various musculoskeletal issues. So, instead of doing that, kneel when digging or doing other tasks on the soil.
If you’re uncomfortable getting your pants dirty, wear kneepads. These will help protect your clothes and skin from dirt or any sharp object that might be lying on the ground.
Some garden tasks involve lifting heavy objects off the ground. If you’re uncareful, you might suffer from back injuries, especially if you don’t know how to lift properly. To do this correctly, level with the object you’ll be lifting and use your legs, not your back. Holding the object close to your body will also prevent strain on your back and arms.
There are lots of skin diseases linked to excessive sun exposure. Unfortunately, many fail to avoid these diseases without realizing doing so is actually pretty easy. Just remember to apply at least an SPF 15 sunscreen before conducting any gardening task to keep you safe. If you’re worried about having darker skin because of being under the sun for too long, skin protection and whitening products from Harmony and Wellness will help you with that.
As you will be under direct sunlight for extended periods, remember to bring a water bottle with you. Doing gardening tasks while exposed to extreme heat might dehydrate you. Replenishing with water now and then is important in staying safe in the garden.
How to Maintain Your Garden Tools
A good quality gardening tool will last you for years, but proper maintenance is the key if you want it to last for more than a decade. Yes, aside from maintaining your garden, your tools should receive the same level of care. Below are some tips for doing just that.
Clean After Every Use
Nothing destroys a garden tool more than dirt does. This is why you must clean your tools right after you’re finished using them. Always have a clean rag next to your storage, and make it a point to wipe your tools clean after accomplishing the garden maintenance tasks of the day. It’s a small price to pay for keeping your tools in their best possible condition.
Now that we’ve mentioned it, make sure you also provide your tools with proper storage. Keeping them away from moisture and sunlight will significantly help prolong their lifespan. Rust can develop quickly in tools made of metal, so rinsing mud, dirt, and soil off of them is important before storing them. You also need to cover your storage to protect them from corrosion and dust.
Although your tools don’t need to be sharpened regularly, it’s all for good measure if you have them serviced once a year at your local gardening tools shop. On the other hand, you can also sharpen them on your own. A whetstone or a flat-file would be more than enough for this job. Before doing this, though, take the time to learn how to use them properly on your tools.
Aside from the metal part of your tools, the handles are also important, especially those made of wood. After each season, conduct a thorough inspection of your tools’ handles and look for signs of splintering. If necessary, use sandpaper to smoothen the handle to avoid blisters or wounds. If the handle is too damaged to repair, have it replaced as soon as you get the chance.
Gardening can change our lives for the better. However, we must ensure that we’re doing it right to reap all the benefits that we can get from it. While having a green thumb is helpful, it’s a totally different thing to know how to maintain your tools and stay healthy while gardening.