One of the benefits of being part of the blogging community is that we are afforded a wonderful learning opportunity. I would never be able to document the number of things I’ve learned over the years, but I thank you all.
So, here are a few of my suggestions as we wind up this year’s outdoor season here in the Northeast.
Cleaning: Wet and Forget is the best cleaning product I’ve ever run across. A local box store has a gallon container for $29.94, but you mix it at a 1:5 ratio so it covers a lot of territory. I used it on our white PVC fence, lattice work, arbor, and house siding that are in varying amounts of shade. You spray it on, and that is it – no scrubbing. As it rains in the future, the green stuff just disappears. My sprayer died, and I even finished the job with a handheld plant sprayer which worked just fine.
Composting: We’ve used several different compost methods over the years – none to brag about. Our current compost barrel was made out of an old rain barrel. We then built a frame out of pressure treated wood to support it and allow it to be turned over.
Once we have compost, we will be able to push the wheelbarrow right underneath it to dump. It is a winner.
Gardening-large tool: Aubuchon Hardware sells an Ames True Temper Garden Cart that I love. I can’t imagine how I got along without it. I can pick it up and put it in the back of the car when I’m working on a Master Gardener project. It costs $89.99, which might sound pricey to some, but if you are looking for a stable, lightweight unit, this is it. You can pull or push with little effort.
Gardening-small tool: A fellow gardener let me borrow these Hydrofarm pruners one day when we were working on potting up plants. They are so handy to snip a bloom or small branch. They come in a small plastic sleeve and can easily fit in a jacket or pant pocket. They work great and cost under $15.
Lawn chair: We purchased two of these Adams brown resin adirondack chairs from Lowe’s this year for under $30 each. They are very comfortable and not as low as regular adirondacks which those of us with back issues can appreciate. They have a drink holder so it’s easy to hold on to a bottle of water when you take a gardening break. They also stack easily when you are ready to put them away.
Organic fertilizer: We don’t do a lot of work on our lawn because we live on four acres, and if we obsessed about it, we’d have a full-time job. But, in the fall we do put down some organic fertilizer – Milorganite. What’s so great about this particular fertilizer? The deer don’t like the smell and avoid it. Now, that is a winner in my book. It sells out fast up here. Yesterday, we had to drive south towards the MA border to find a couple of bags. Two bags were around $26.
Raised beds: We’ve used galvanized stock tanks for three years now as raised beds. They work perfectly. We bought a couple on Craigslist and a couple at Tractor Supply. We have a total of four and grow all of our veggies in them.
Tomatoes: Sun gold cherry tomatoes produced fruit all summer long in a quantity that I could not keep up with. I gave them away by the pint – some days even by the quart. They were the sweetest tomatoes I’ve ever grown, and I will definitely plant them again next year.
So, do you have recommendations to share for next gardening season? Well, besides hiring a landscape company. 🙂