Garden Tool Time – Beautiful Care & Storage of Yard Implements

Garden Tools

This time of year, I find I have to spend a good amount of time, gathering tools.  I am a notorious slob when it comes to gardening….tools are left everywhere and as things start to die back, I find hand tools that were abandoned sometime in June.

Many times, I have thought that I should make extra effort to organize and even take special care of my tools, but I largely feel successful if I can get them all gathered before the first snowfall.

Nonetheless, I gathered up these great ideas for tool care.  The kids are out of school today (Happy Veterans Day) and I am in search of a project that will make me feel productive while not fighting the natural distracting forces that having them in my work space creates.  I think its tool and barn cleaning day.

garden tool care kit

If I were really organized, I would spend a few hours in the barn like an old yankee with this handsome kit (below).  I imagine my barn’s walls covered in beautiful tools for every chore and meticulously cared for so that nothing is ever broken, dull, or unworthy of keeping.

garden tools

Are these beautiful images inspiring you to do some Autumn tool care?  I am curious, what do you to take care of your tools or organize them?  I could use a few tips.

image from garden on sugar,  Natural Garden Company. , Suite 101. Cox & Cox

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rochelle greayer

Hi, I'm Rochelle and for 18 years I have worked as a landscape designer, author/writer, and design teacher. I've designed residential and hospitality (for hotels, restaurants, and spas) gardens across the USA and in the UK, Europe and the Middle East. After many years of teaching garden design topics in person, I launched the PITH + VIGOR Boot Camp series in early 2018. Through my blog, social media, and online courses (Garden Design Bootcamp and Planting Design Boot Camp) I aim to help homeowners learn how to confidently design and create home gardens that reflect their own personal and unique style.

7 Comments

  1. jil casey on November 11, 2011 at 10:04 am

    Have you heard the one about having a bucket of sand to stick small tools in after you use them so they don’t rust? I’ve always remembered this one since hearing about it, but I’m like you, trying to get things done before the snow flies.

    • rochelle on November 11, 2011 at 2:03 pm

      Jil – I have heard of it, but, of course, haven’t done it….a great idea though and have heard first hand accounts of it working well from those who have.

  2. Geoff on November 11, 2011 at 2:45 pm

    We have this perpetual gravitational struggle between the garage with the gardening tools (me) and the barn with the equine management tools (she). My favorite shovel always seems to be leaning beside a stall door or getting chewed on, or her favorite silage fork is in the mulch heap.
    I took a tip from my grandfather who had a similar problem. Barn tools are banded in red, household & garden tools banded in blue. I went so far as to extend the model to hand tools, drills, wrenches, screwdrivers etc. Somehow it always gets a bit messy come Sunday afternoon, so i crack a cold one, load up the truck with the migrant tools, and get things back in place.
    Winter prep is fairly simple and takes an afternoon. Linseed oil on the handles of anything w/o a urethane finish, including wheelbarrows. Tighten up all the fasteners on the wheelbarrows and lube the bushings. Tighten, shim, wedge all the manure forks, pick & mattock heads, take an extra whack on the shovel rivets. At the same time I make sure the cords are out for block heaters and battery tenders, check the horse waterer heaters and lube the rollup doors, Last year I failed to check the work lights on the tractor and found myself trying to angle a blade, in the snow, with a flashlight under my chin. Smallholdings are fun.

    • rochelle on November 11, 2011 at 8:09 pm

      Geoff, I think you need to come to my house and straighten me out….thankfully I have not needed block heaters but I know the feeling of always worrying about the lawn tractor….darn thing is in the shop more than it is out…yes small holdings are fun 😉

  3. anne on November 11, 2011 at 7:47 pm

    I built my shed out perfectly with each tool type having their own hooks, and all odds and ends gathered in like-minded crates, but honestly, most of my tools are either rusting in the back of my truck or somewhere in the yard, and the shed is jam packed with different buckets full of tools for whatever project was last. Tool organizing and follow through are a true discipline that I have yet to obtain. I might try the next level of organization that is similar to what I have seen in bike shops with the outline of each tool in sharpie on a peg board. This is for sure a long winter project! It’s embarrassing, but sometimes it keeps me up at night thinking about my tools rusting out in the weather, but all is forgotten in the morning.

    • rochelle on November 11, 2011 at 8:06 pm

      anne – I am so glad to know that I am not the only one! Love the sharpie idea thought. R

  4. Ann on November 22, 2011 at 4:43 pm

    My source of inspiration is a website of landscape company in Vancouver, BC. They are posting pictures from their commercial and residential landscape installation and maintenance projects on their website every month. Go take a look at their slideshow http://www.beaverlandscape.com

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