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Where Have You Been All My Life?

January 20th, 2015

Last week I bought myself a little pruning saw. It’s nothing big, in fact, it’s super lightweight and slides easily into my back pocket. I have no idea how I have lived without one of these for the past 38 years. I got it from Amazon for those wondering. For some reason it won’t let me link directly to the page with this product. But search for Silky POCKETBOY Fine Teeth.
pruning saw 3
It cuts through large sapling, branches, small twigs and pretty much anything with great ease. I was blown away by how quickly it cut branches from the apple tree.
pruning saw 2
This will come in very handy because I’m planning on harvesting saplings that need thinned from an area out back. They will be used for garden supports of various shapes and sizes. I’m planning on making panels for my peas and tepees for my pole beans.
pruning saw 1
Several people were asking in the comments how long the blade was, so I snapped this photo so you can clearly see the size of the saw and blade when extended.
Silky Pocket Pruner
I also love that it comes with this handy plastic carrier. This tool will probably always be in my pocket when I’m working in the garden, I have no idea how I have made do without it up till now.

What’s a garden tool you would never want to live without? Have you discovered any new garden tools recently?

Neat and Tidy

November 15th, 2012

I’m a big fan of the traditional rowed vegetable garden, perhaps it’s my inner tendency to OCD rearing it’s head. Usually, I try not to be too crazy about spacing, though I do like to use my square foot gardening templates to keep things neat. When you’re doing long rows of vegetables it can be tough to keep those rows straight.

Earlier this fall, I purchased a seed bed preparation rake from Johnny’s Seeds along with the little pieces of tubing for row marking. I must say, I LOVE THIS TOOL. It’s super wide, thus allowing me to prepare a large area very quickly. I also love the little plastic tubes, they can be put on different tines depending on the spacing you want.

This tool makes seeding an entire bed while keeping the lines straight go very quickly. I’m really looking forward to using this in the spring for nice rows of beets, carrots, and lettuce! Although my grandpa always did say, “You can fit more in a crooked row.”

When it comes to the vegetable garden, do you like neat straight rows or do you like things a little more natural?

Friday Favorite: the Hand Hoe

August 3rd, 2012

One day, on a whim, I added a hand hoe to an on-line purchase. I’ve tried all sorts of hand tools in the garden and have been disappointed almost every time. Like my cobra head weeder, most of them are gathering dust.

Little did I know how much I would love this tool and how often I would use it. In fast, it’s probably my most used garden hand tool. Why do I love it so much?

It has a very sharp edge, which I sharpen a few times each season. This edge allows it to cut through tiny seedlings. You can drag the sharp edge and skim the top of the soil cutting off tiny seedlings as you go. If you get them small enough, they won’t come back.

Thanks Maybelline for asking in the comment section about what I use to sharpen my tools. I have used the Spyderco Tri-Angle Sharpmaker for 17 years for all my sharpening needs from garden tools to kitchen knives.

The pointed tip is great for digging up the entire roots of larger weeds. It can also be used as a small maddox for whacking at tough weeds to get them up. The pointed tip also allows enough precision to weed around plants, even if they’re growing fairly close together.

The shape of this tool makes it much easier on the wrist than a regular trowel. Weeding for a couple hours does not result in any wrist pain or strain. It also provides some much needed leverage when trying to “pop” tenacious weeds from their spots.

This is the tool you will find me using most often in the garden, especially when weeding. I will never be without a hand hoe in my tool shed! I noticed there are a variety of hand hoes on Amazon. One of these days I’ll buy another one or two of these other options for my garden toolbox. Now that Mr Chiots is getting more into gardening he might start making mine scarce.

What’s your favorite gardening hand tool?

Reading & Watching

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.