I need to purchase garden supplies early. Procrastination is a huge problem for me at the start of every growing season. Because it is still a little chilly outside, I tell myself, “nah I can wait until next week to pick that up.” But the problem with that approach is that, all of a sudden you get a beautiful day and I have nothing on hand! Therefore, I am organizing myself now through the ease of online shopping, so that when I am ready to work in the gardens, I have everything needed at my fingertips.
Not to mention, I just walked outside and noticed some nibbles on my tulips that are starting to break ground. Uh-oh! After checking the garage, some of my deer proofing supplies are low, so I need to get shopping stat!!!
I am linking my top 5 garden supply list here. All of these supplies can be found locally at nurseries, markets and big box stores. If you are anything like me and procrastinate, online shopping at the start of the season is very effective.
During the growing season, I am at the nurseries weekly and pick supplies up as needed. But for now, online ordering saves time and prepares me for that first beautiful day of the season.
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1. Deer Out
As an avid gardener, I’m often asked how I prevent deer from devouring my plants. While no method is foolproof, there are a few precautions we can take to deter or at least minimize deer damage. I implement a few strategies that work well for me and have given the same advice to my family, friends and clients who have had similar success.
One deterrent is using a spray which coats the plants with a foul, terrible flavored coating. Every season, I go through several bottles of Deer Out. To learn more about how I use this product, see my blog post on Deer-Proofing Your Garden.
After perusing my garage, I don’t have much of this left. So I need to place my order today!
2. Poison Ivy Products
When we first moved to our home and started gardening the property, we did not have any poison ivy. Through the years, I believe it came in through some bulk-delivered mulch.
How does that happen? When companies mulch trees that have poison ivy vines on them, poison ivy will regenerate where that mulch is sited. Having poison ivy washes, sprays and scrubs on hand helps minimize and prevent the damage caused through contact with poison ivy.
There are some that swear by a good scrubbing of soap, washcloth, and cold water when they come indoors. That’s great if that works for you. In general, I do that. However, I prefer to use the following products when I know I came in contact with poison ivy because I want to insure I got all of the oils off me:
I am really good about wearing gardening gloves, cleaning myself off and looking for signs of poison ivy vines while I am weeding and working in my gardens. When I know I have been in contact with poison ivy, I immediately, go inside and scrub the affected area with cold water and Technu wash. NEVER use hot or warm water because that will open the pores and allow poison ivy oils to penetrate the skin. I have used the Technu products religiously when needed and they work extremely well. During the gardening season, I keep supplies in the shower. I highly recommend these products.
I am adding Zanfel to my list of go to products because it is one step above Technu but a little more expensive. Last summer, my puppy came in contact with poison ivy and unbeknownst to me, got some on her paws. Vividly, I remember her laying on my ankles on the sofa after coming inside one day to nap. Two days later, I had the worst, full blown case of poison ivy – it was terrible. It itched, it burned and I was miserable.
I had no idea I came in contact with the oils and therefore, the oils remained on my skin for several days until it was too late. I went through several products, including Technu, but nothing really worked. My doctor prescribed a steroid which helped but I was still miserable. I started researching and found this product Zanfel – it was the only thing that really helped with the pain, suffering and healing process so I swear by this product and will now keep it on hand in case someone in my home gets a full blown case of poison ivy. This product was not well stocked in local pharmacies and where I found it, was more expensive than Amazon. I strongly recommend getting this product.
3. Garden Gloves
Not everyone wears garden gloves, but I prefer to use them when I garden because it keeps my hands clean and protects me from blisters, cuts, scratches and potential poison ivy oils. When I am weeding or digging, I like to wear the shorter wrist gloves. When cutting back roses or working in deep brush, I prefer to wear the longer gloves to protect my arms and hands.
Pro-Tip: Keep kitchen gloves on hand. Kitchen gloves you ask? Keep several of these on hand!!! They are great for pulling poison ivy if you see it. I grab kitchen gloves whenever I want to pull poison ivy because they are long, they protect my hands, wrists and arms and I can easily dispose of them. Kitchen gloves are a necessity.
It is important to feed container plantings, annuals and houseplants for successful growth. As I mentioned in my blog post, Easy Houseplant Care Tips I prefer to use Osmocote because it feeds for three months. In New Jersey, we plant annuals and containers around mid-May and one granule application at the time of planting feeds plants until August. For me, it is so much easier to add the granules at planting as opposed to feeding them weekly when I water.
5. Garden Tools
No gardener is ready for the season without some tools of the trade. These garden tools are great to use while planting, weeding and pruning. I am a huge fan of Fiskars products. While the kneeling pad is not necessary, I use it ALL THE TIME when I am working in the gardens. It’s easier on my knees and keeps them clean!
Are you ready to get back in the garden too? I hope you found this post useful. If you have any questions, please let me know. Follow me @bricksnblooms on Pinterest, Facebook and Instagram where I share lots of the behind-the-scenes of my home, garden and personal life.
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