Thursday, December 20, 2007

Essentials for Gardening

I am always interested and amazed by what other gardeners are doing, hoping that I can pick up a few new tricks and ideas to use in my own garden. So, I thought it was a very interesting list that Fran Sorin recently featured in her GardenSmart section of USA Weekend. She mentions that "gardeners need a pantry, just like chefs do." That is something that I certainly agree with, because to be an effective gardener, you must have the tools of the trade, just like any other professional (even if you are only a novice, you can pretend to know what you are doing). Ms. Sorin suggests setting up your gardening pantry in either the kitchen or garage (it's even better if you have a garden shed you can setup in).

I thought that some of the items she includes in her gardening pantry were worthy of consideration. Here is a list of what she stocks:
  • Twine (you cannot garden without it, you need it for alot of projects, like staking your green beans that seem to be ascending into the sky)
  • Pruners (important to have more than one kind for various tasks, like pruning your beautiful roses)
  • Yellow sticky fly paper for pests (I know they maybe good for the environment, but I have always hated to see them - I don't like to look at dead pests)
  • Plastic spray bottle (I have more than one type, so that I can get the spray volume that I want depending on what kind of product I am spraying)
  • Small bag of crumbly potting mix (you are not a gardener, if you do not have any potting mix on hand, it's a must)
  • Terra cotta pots with saucers (something I need to start using, since I have read plants do much better in them than in plastic planting pots)
  • Neem or pyola oil for insects and mites (I have several bottles of Neem oil on hand, it is a natural insecticide - a must for organic gardening)
  • Organic fungicide (again, a must for organic gardening)
  • Spray fertilizer or granular fertilizer (she uses a fish oil or probiotic, something I would like to try this season)
  • Hot pepper spray to ward off squirrels, rabbits and other critters (we use hot pepper solution to run away moles and voles, and any other creatures that crawl underground and make unsightly holes in the ground)
  • Garlic clips, Liquid Fence, Garlic Barrier or cut-up bars of Irish Spring soap to repel deer (we don't worry with deer, we have other pests to deal with, but this is certainly good to know)

It's always helpful to find out what other people are doing in their gardens, you may be able to learn some wonderful new ideals of things you would like to try in your own garden. I certainly appreciated the list of must-have garden gear that Ms. Sorin shared, it gave me a little inspiration.

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