If you want an immaculate garden, then keeping your garden tools in mint condition is a must. No exceptions. With endless possibilities to customize your garden, you can easily get caught up and neglect your tools in the process. By doing so, your dirty tools will form rust and infect your garden, meaning you’ll need to buy new ones. This can cost you a lot of time and money.
To save you from this mess, I experimented with some different methods I found online, and discovered a few that work! Not only do they work, but they’re super quick and easy. All you need to do is follow the instructions and dedicate a few minutes after your gardening to turn them into routines. These methods are the best ways to clean, maintain, sharpen, and store your garden tools, so they can serve you for years to come.
How to Clean My Garden Tools?
Out of all the different ways to take care of your garden tools, giving them a proper clean should be number one. Without clean tools, there’s not much point in doing anything else. And if you get it right, you’ll have fewer problems to worry about later on. Make sure you follow these simple steps after every gardening session, and you won’t go wrong.
1.Clean your digging tools with a garden hose. Get rid of any dirt, soil, or mud.
2.Get rid of any matter remaining with semi-coarse steel wool. Then dry them with a clean towel
3.Clean your pruners, loppers, or shears with a stiff brush and detergent/soapy water. Scrub off any dirt or sap.
4.Rinse your pruners etc. with water and dry them with a towel.
5.Soak your tools in a container with a diluted solution of 2 cups of household bleach mixed with 3.5 liters of water. Ensure your tools are soaked thoroughly.
6.Rinse off the solution with plain water and dry thoroughly with a clean towel.
How Can I Keep My Garden Tools from Rusting?
If you fail to take good care of your garden tools, they’ll start to form rust. Not only do they become a mare to clean, but they’ll slowly infect your garden before it’s too late. Even if you clean your tools often, you still won’t prevent rust from forming. Follow the instructions below to give your tools and garden the best possible protection.
1.Wash your tools as per the cleaning instructions.
2.Coat your tools with either linseed oil or olive oil (preferably linseed). Make sure you coat both the metal working parts and the wooden handles.
3.Apply it thoroughly over the tool and leave it for 15 minutes. Wipe any excess off with a dry cloth or towel. Leave to dry before putting them in storage.
4.Make sure the cloth or towel is clean. Using a dirty one can cause problems.
Boiled linseed oil prevents rust as it creates a barrier between the metal and oxygen for the metal parts. With the wooden handles, it’ll condition them to prevent splitting. Avoid petroleum products, such as motor oil, as you’ll be introducing petroleum in your soil.
How Do I Sharpen My Garden Tools?
What’s the point of using garden tools that make things harder? When you use blunt tools, you create more work for yourself and slow things down in the process. The mower engine bogs down, the pruners chew on the branches and digging becomes unbearable – to name a few. Each type of tool has a different way to sharpen, so I’ve broken them down by type.
Sharpening Lawnmower Blades
1.Disconnect your lawnmower and remove the blade with a wrench. Spray lubricant oil if it’s too tight.
2.Place the blade in a vice. File in one direction from inside of the blade toward the out, following the side of the cutting edge.
3.Complete until the blade is as sharp as a butter knife, and not razor sharp.
4.Make sure both sides are balanced. Hang the blade horizontally on a nail, and if one side dips, it needs more filing.
Sharpening Pruners, Knives, and Hatchets
1.Lock the tool in a vice. Use a coarse diamond file and start filing from the innermost part of the blade.
2.Follow the curve of the blade while pushing the file away from you in a curved motion. No need to apply heaps of pressure.
Sharpening Spades, Shovels, and Hoes
1.Tightly secure the tool in a vice.
2.File from each side towards the center point of the head at a 45-degree angle. This is the bevel edge for most shovels and spades.
Remember that garden tools only need to be sharpened about once or twice a year, and that razor-sharp tools will always dull quickly.
What Are the Best Ways to Store My Garden Tools?
If you don’t store or organize your garden tools properly, you risk losing your tools and wasting precious time. Organizing your tools will give you more storage space, so you have more room to work with. Also, you’ll protect your tools from damage by keeping them off the ground. Here are some neat ideas to organize your garden tools in your shed or garage.
Hang them On the Wall
Avoid having to leave your tools in the corner by drilling old hooks and knobs on the wall. Make sure you give each tool enough space by measuring distance.
Make a Garden Tool Rack
If you can’t hang them on the wall, then consider making a garden tool rack. Get some timber and drill it into the wall once it’s all level. Then, choose the hanger and hooks you want and attach them accordingly.
Use an Old Shower Basket
Grab on old shower basket (or something similar), and put all your essential tools inside e.g., spade, gardening knife, etc. You’ll have all your essentials within reach at any time.
Build a Tool Stand
Gather some PVC scraps and cut them into 6-inch pieces. Nail them into your shed wall, at the bottom and halfway points. This works well for long-handled garden tools.
Reward Your Garden with Well-Kept Tools:
As you can see, taking care of your garden tools is not as daunting as it seems. By making these instructions into a habit, you can keep your garden in good nick and save money while you’re at it. They only take a few minutes to implement, so you might as well use them to your advantage!