As I was cleaning cobwebs off the edge and underside of the verandah this
morning, I realised that the tool I use for the job was a bit unusual
because it's a toilet brush.
It works brilliantly as the bristles are strong and the long handle keeps me
away from the spiders.
I also used my old kitchen knife with it's bright orange plastic handle and
this set me to wondering about what sort of other unusual/unexpected tools
other people use in the garden.
My garden shed is a one car detached garage located 150 feet from my
vegetable garden, so I have a rural mailbox in my vegetable garden for
storing small often used hand tools like pruners/knives/trowels and supplies
like string/twistums/pencil-paper, roll of paper towels etc... inexpensive,
weatherproof, and saves a lot of steps back and forth to the shed.
If I recall correctly, Bill W. posted this idea at least a year ago,
Perhaps a convergent idea, but damned if I'll see shel, mackie's
soul/butt buddy, take credit for Bill W's post.
I found it in Organic Garden Mag circa 1970 ish. Have never had and
original thought. But this does not trouble me.
Book "The Anxiety Of Influence" Subtitled "A Theory of
By Harold Bloom
<(Amazon.com product link shortened)46459329&sr=1-1>
Bill who wonders if Bloom ever gardened but with a last name like that
The Reviews are worth a read and a tiny shed aka mailbox is handy !!!
Don't be such a Butthole... I never said it was my idea, I said it's
something I have and do. It wasn't your Butthole buddy Bill's idea
either... folks have been using rural mailboxes for weatherproof storage for
nearly 100 years. I'm just surprised that some nappy wearing infantile
pinhead didn't whine that a mailbox is not a tool.
Credit where credit is due. Sheldon stayed on topic and it IS a good idea
regardless of whoever first had the idea or who first posted it here or
I very much doubt that any of us have come up with truly 'original' ideas in
our gardens. In fact one of the reasons I specifically go to visit Open
Gardens each year is to look at what other people do and how things work in
A friend was here about 9 months ago and loved the way I'd lined the edge of
a flower bed with thyme and asked if next time I was tidying up the area,
I'd pot up some thyme so she could do the same thing. I eventually gave her
a whole broccoli box of rooted thyme and was glad to do so.
It's no skin off my nose if someone copys my ideas. In fact I see it as a
Also what I like is that it's so portable, for winter I can simply store it
in my shed. At first all I wanted was a small weatherproof toolbox but
after searching the various hardware stores those that would have done the
trick were too large and expensive.
Got be thinking about what other tools are about that can have garden
use. First was a small masonry trowel. Small and very pointed and it
could take and edge.
Then looking at my caulk gun wondered if a mix of soil and very small
seeds could be used as a delivery system tool. I sprinkled carrots
seeds by hand and seem to be a bit heavy handed. Even got a tool with a
wheel that can be used for seed planting but even with size control it
is heavy handed too.
Bill whose food garden is no longer due to shade and shifting family
stuff. Still got herbs and many plants here but shade issues give me
concerns for tomatoes.
I did have an old trowel at one time but found that it got rusty quickly as
I kept leaving it stuck pointy end down in the soil. It then got lost
completely being such a beige tool.
I have a friend whose husband painted all of their tools a shocking
fluorescent pink which I thought was a good idea since most garden tools
seem to have green handles if they are any colour - dumb idea is green.
Get an old jar with a plastic screw top lid and drill a hole in it near the
edge. Mix your carrot seed with sand and shake it up and then just pour out
the seed/sand mix to get a much thinner sowing.
Even got a tool with a
Here shade in summer is wonderful but given that over our last summer there
were massive bushfires (wildfires in USian) is areas where there had
previously been none because of a moist climate that has disappearred as a
result of climate change, shade near houses is becoming less popular. I now
look with a more jaundiced eye at too much shade or tree/shrub growth close
to the house.
Flourescent paint is available in spray cans. I keep a can on my mower for
marking rocks that begin to surface so I can avoid/locate them later and try
to dig them out. This paint is very visible, even glows in the dark:
The rocks that pop up where I mow are the only ones I care about, and every
spring there are new ones. I keep a crowbar in my tractor just for the
purpose of prying rocks out of the ground, but not all are pryable. Many
don't budge no matter how hard I apply pressure. For those I have a bucket
in the barn that contains an assortment of large chisels, safety goggles,
and a four pound engineers hammer... I do my best to chip off enough so my
mower blade doesn't hit it and put the chips into the bucket so they don't
cut my tires, not so simple as most rocks around here are granite. With
some I can try digging but once I realize it's a boulder and not just a
rock, that's when the chisels comes in. I've pried a couple out with the
bucket on my tractor but that's not always possible as they could be the
size of a VW. The last one I was able to get into the bucket had to weigh
over a ton, my tractor's front loader could barely lift it... when I first
noticed that one the part sticking out of the ground was about the size of a
saucer. I tried digging it out with a shovel so when I notied it moved ever
so slightly I made a mental not to go at it next I had the bucket on the
tractor.... once I got it pried up a bit I was commited, there was no
turning back because it wasn't possible to push it back down. It took be
the better part of the day to hand dig around it so I could get the lip of
the bucket under enough to tip it out of its hole... then another struggle
to get it into the bucket without sliding it accross the lawn making a worse
mess. I drove rebar in to keep it from sliding, and finally it ended up in
the rock wall in front of my barn. The hole was now a freebie and too nice
to fill in and not use for planting a tree, so now a very healthy forest
pansy redbud is living there.
My garden has been downsized from 'very large' to a third floor 6' X 8'
balcony of containers so I had to do some rethinking of effective garden
tools. My favorite is the three pronged garden claw with the two side prongs
ground off. I probably now use 'the hook' 75% of the time a tool is needed.
Three years ago I was swarmed by an infestation of aphids. Normally it
wouldn't have been a big deal but I no longer had access to a strong blast
of water since there is no garden hose available. I tried soapy water from a
spray bottle with mediocre results and was rapidly loosing ground. Any sort
of pesticide was out of the question since I have a bird bath and feeders
that are in constant use on my balcony. What to do, what to do. I have found
that a large gin and tonic brings on some brilliant ideas whilst pondering.
I used my hand vac. I hooked up the mini tool hose attachment I use to clean
out the gunk in my computer and sewing machines, freshened up the tall adult
beverage and spent about two hours patiently sucking up hoards of aphids
with the little chisel head type tool. When I was done I just rinsed out
the 'crud cup' and sent the aphids and few other assorted bad guys down the
drain. When I now see any unfriendlies that can't be quickly neutralized by
the death pinch administered with thumb and forefinger I bring out the hand
vac. Works like a charm!
:-)) That sounds very therapeutic. I like to hand water when I need a bit
of soothing down time but I think vacuuming aphids would do too. I get
aphids every spring but luckily, I also get little Superb Blue Wrens who
arrive and clear the lot within a week of theem appearing. One of the
reasons why I try to garden organically as I dont' want to lose these tiny
When I was done I just rinsed out
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