In the past, most gardening was done out of necessity. Today many people garden because it's refreshing and the rewards are fresher than anything one could purchase at the grocery store. These gardening tips and ideas are sure to help make better use of your gardening endeavors, so you get to spend more time doing the gardening chores you love and less time preparing and organizing supplies to make it happen.
Easy-to-Transplant Seed Starters
Reuse corrugated egg cartons to start seeds indoors. Collect egg cartons and when it's time to start seeds indoors, simply fill with soil and use each egg holder to plant seeds in. By the time the seedlings are ready to transplant, the carton will pull apart with ease and each seedling can be planted directly in the ground without disruption to the tender plant or its developing roots.
Monthly Garden Tips
Take advantage of monthly gardening to-do lists. Most newspapers, magazines and websites offer monthly tips to help prepare for the following months' gardening chores, often in correlation with your particular climate zone. There is much that can be done long before planting season to help eliminate cramming everything into one or two weekends prior to planting.
A few gardening tasks that can be accomplished during the resting period include: test your garden soil; start a compost bin; rake leaves to add to compost; check tools and equipment (winterize if necessary); read through plant and seed catalogs and plan your spring garden on paper; and purchase supplies such as organic fertilizer, organic compost and tools ahead of time. The Master Gardener Volunteer Program at Ohio State University Extension came up with a comprehensive month-by-month garden guide to include all gardening tasks.
Help Your Hands
Gardening will take its toll on a gardener's hands in a short period of time; that's why a good pair of garden gloves is recommended. A great pair of gardening gloves does not have to be expensive. Gardening gloves that fit snug, are made of durable cloth and have a light grip added to the fingers and palms will meet your gardening needs. Another gardening tip that works wonders--apply a generous amount of lotion to your hands before putting on gardening gloves to render soft, supple hands when your work is done.
Harvesting rainwater is an inexpensive solution to providing necessary water to thirsty gardens. For as little as $25 at most gardening centers, you can walk away with a rain barrel that will catch rainwater from the gutter of your home or other building that you can later use to water your garden. Additionally, the North Carolina State University Cooperative Extension recommends using rainwater for plants as it does not contain added salts or minerals and is highly oxygenated.