A Beginner’s Guide to Gardening
Topic #1: Basic Gardening Tools
Homestead Gardens would like to inspire and assist novice gardeners by providing you with a series of useful Beginners’ Guides to Home Gardening. During the next few weeks we’ll tell you, in plain English, WHAT to plant in your garden and HOW to plant it. We’ll tell you what TOOLS you’ll need, and give you TIPS on how to care for it. In coming weeks, the series will cover the basic principles of garden planning, including suggestions for what plants to pick for a beautiful and low-maintenance garden, and show you simple steps for planting and maintaining a healthy and beautiful garden.
We’ll begin our series this week with a guide to the TOOLS you should have available to make your gardening experience as effortless as possible:
Here’s what you’ll want to start your successful home garden:
- Gloves:First and foremost, it’s imperative to find a pair of gardening gloves. Every gardener has multiple pairs of gloves to protect their hands from thorns and splinters while digging in the soil or pruning plants. Find a durable pair that protects your hands but doesn’t hinder motion, as you’ll need freedom of movement while operating the following equipment.
- Trowel: A trowel is a small hand shovel that is helpful when planting seeds, annuals and smaller perennials when working close to the ground or in a container. A gardening essential, trowels will last for years with proper storage out of the of the sun and away from moisture.
- Gardening Shovel: A long-handled gardening shovel is the mainstay tool in gardening. Besides digging and filling holes, this shovel is also used to remove plants from the ground for transplanting and to move soil, soil amendments, and mulch from place to place.
- Rake: Rakes have several important uses in the garden, and come in two basic types. Leaf rakes are made up of long, thin tines that effectively remove leaves and other light debris from your garden. Garden rakes have short, thick tines and a straight heavy steel back. Garden rakes are used for preparing the soil by breaking up large clumps, sifting out rocks and heavy debris and leveling or grading your soil bed prior to planting.
- Pruning Tools: Pruning tools are used for cutting branches on shrubs and trees, stems on flowers, and any other use involving cutting plant material. Hand pruners are used for most light and medium cutting jobs. Loppers are larger pruners with long handles, and cut through large diameter branches. Pruning saws are saws designed to cut through very thick branches or trunks. They are specifically designed to cut through live and dead wood easily and safely.
Visit either of our two Homestead Gardens locations, in Davidsonville and Severna Park, for more information on any of these essential gardening tools and their uses. Our helpful and experienced gardening staff looks forward to answering any of your questions and assisting you in any way.