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Gardening Tips & Safety Advice by Elaine Dixon

31.03.21

Spring is here!

Saturday 20th March marked the first day of Spring and we all welcome with this turn of the season the brighter mornings and evenings, particularly as Government restrictions remain in place. There is no better place to be at this time of the year than in your garden where you can put your spare time and creative skills to good use.

For many people, gardens are a therapeutic and peaceful haven and in particular at this time of year when gardens are blooming with pretty bright colours, singing birds and beautiful butterflies. It is important however to be mindful of potential hazards to ensure that the experience is tranquil and avoidable risks are mitigated.

In early Spring many homeowners will spend lots of hours in their gardens preparing, planning, and planting for beautiful blossoms, just like our very own colleague Elaine Dixon. Elaine is an avid gardener and kindly took some time out from her hectic role as Commercial Relations Manager to share with us her top gardening safety tips and seasonal advice.

Check out Elaine’s helpful tips and beautiful garden photos for some inspiration on how to make the best of your garden this Spring in a safe manner.

Safety Tips

  • Avoid trip hazards in the garden such as loose or broken paving stones, uneven patios
  • Don’t leave tools lying around such as spades, rakes etc
  • Always tidy away hosepipes
  • Use gloves when gardening – and a good hand-cream to keep those green fingers healthy
  • Wear appropriate gardening shoes with suitable grip to prevent falls or slipping
  • Be aware that some plants are toxic to humans and pets - see advice from RHS  
  • Make sure chemicals such as weed killer etc. are stored safely and ideally locked away
  • Always clean gardening tools after use to keep them in tip top condition
  • Never use electrical equipment in wet weather
  • Don’t leave cuttings on a path or lawn as these can become wet and slippery therefore causing a potential trip hazards
  • Don’t overfull garden bags as these can quickly become too heavy to lift
  • If you are thinking of installing a pond give careful consideration to its location. Ensure it’s positioned in view of the house and is child and animal friendly by positioning safety guards, covers or trellis
  • Be careful when moving pots as these can be heavy
  • Be mindful when plating any plants with spikey leaves or thorns. Consider the plant location and avoid planting these next to raised paths or porchways or where children or visitors may fall into them
  • Ensure any plant supports have rubber cane caps protectors to prevent sharp canes being exposed and causing injury
  • Remember when out in the garden it’s easy to forget how strong the sun can be so make sure you have plenty of sun cream and a hat.

Seasonal gardening advice

  • Now is the perfect time to begin to think about the Chelsea Chop – the name is used as it’s normally done around the time of the Chelsea Flower show, May time. However, like many
  • Big events in 2021, the Chelsea Flower Show 2021 has been rescheduled to autumn time. This Chelsea Chop is a pruning method used to limit the size and to control the flowering season of many herbaceous plants so don’t be scared – it will give you stronger longer flowering plants
  • Early spring is the time to move any plants whilst dormant especially if you don’t like their current position or if they need more light/ shelter.
  • Be mindful before sowing seeds directly outside and consider if the soil is warm enough before doing this
  • Enjoy an immediate colour carnival by planting primulas and polyanthus in pots and at the front of borders
  • Protect new shoots of lupins, hostas and other vulnerable plants form slugs and snails

 

We hope you enjoy gardening in a safe way and responsible way!