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Developing Your Green Fingers – What Will You Need?

 

I bloody love the summer, I do. Lighter mornings make it easier to get out of bed, lighter evenings make the day last longer, and it’s warm and bright. There’s literally nothing I hate about summer (except wasps, nobody likes wasps).

 

This year, I have been determined that I was going to make the most of the sunshine months. The first part of this year was a bit of a dark one for me and so the summer for me was very much needed – I am always a better version of myself when the temperatures rise and the sun shines, I’m more proactive, I’m happier and I feel like I come to life.

 

So, this year, Operation Garden is fully on and we are completely revamping the whole space. As we live in rented, the garden is low maintenance, with a couple of small flower beds and everything else being shingle and paving stones – not exactly a relaxing comforting space and with the only greenery coming from the bushes and a single tree, it isn’t somewhere I’ve ever enjoyed being. In fact, in the 2.5 years I’ve lived here, I’ve spent less than 2 hours sitting outside, which is a shame when I find being outside so soul-affirming.

 

I’ll be sharing the final revamped look on here when it’s completely finished as well as a few more posts more focussed on particular elements, but today it’s all about the prep work and bits and pieces I recommend anybody who is embarking on a green fingered future will need.

 

Hand Tools
We actually gathered our hand tools over the space of a few weeks and found that as we went along with various works we’d suddenly realise we needed something else and we’d have to hop in the car and zip off to the shops! There’s a few key bits you’ll need for a garden space to keep in your shed/garage for as and when you need them:

Spade
Fork
Hard bristle broom
Secateurs
Rake

Surprisingly hand tools like these aren’t hugely expensive, with most of these items coming in at well under a tenner from hardware shops such as B&Q and Wickes. You can source them from local garden centres or online too, but I think with hand tools it’s advisable to buy them in person so you can feel the weight, balance and quality of them.

 

Large Items
These are the bits that are going to cost you more money but if you do your research and shop around you should be able to find some good deals!

Lawn mower
Hose pipe/reel
Ladder

Obviously if you have a paved garden you won’t need a lawn mower, but having a ladder is always handy as it’s surprising how often you need one!

 

I also recommend you buy yourself a watering can (the jet stream from a hose can be too harsh on some plants) and a couple of pairs of good gloves – one thinner pair for those more fiddly, precise jobs where you need to be a little bit more delicate, and some more hard-wearing ones for the tougher jobs or for when handling plants that might fight back (roses, thistles etc). Knee pads or kneeling mats like these ones from Engelbert Strauss are also an absolute prize too as kneeling on the ground can be a little wearing on your joints! Injuries in the garden are all too common, so it’s important to be prepared for all eventualities and to safeguard yourself against any potential accidents.

 

Once you’ve got your little collection of goodies, you’ll be well on your way to becoming the next Alan(a) Titchmarsh – although at the moment it would be fair to say I’ve “got all the gear and no idea” as this is the first time I’ve ever had a garden to care for, so it’s a steep learning curve!

 

Do you have any garden must-haves that you recommend I add to my collection in the shed?

 

 

Penny xx

 

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