Whilst this may not be the most exciting of subjects for a post, I hope my Advice for Safety in the Garden will be heeded. It comes from personal experience.
I recently strimmed the edge of the lawn, as I always do, before mowing. At the time of writing our lawn is barely a year old. It is surrounded by raised beds apart from three entry/exit points. It is what I call a clear, clean and tidy lawn, in fact it looks positively bowling-green-like when cut.
So imagine my surprise when I was strimming for a stone to fly up and hit me……just above my eye-lid! Aarghh! Apart from the ouch-factor it was a reminder that 1/2 inch lower would have meant a very nasty eye injury. What was a five minute job, could have cost me my eyesight.
I SHOULD HAVE BEEN WEARING GOGGLES!
How many times have I been told? …… So I’ve no-one to blame but myself!
Note to self: Buy some safety goggles
Do you remember when I wrote the post about making Hypertufa?
There is a picture in that post of my hand covered in the hypertufa mix. It has cement in it. Cement is corrosive….
I SHOULD HAVE BEEN WEARING GLOVES!
Note to self: Buy Rubber gloves for handling ‘nasty’ substances
More Advice for Safety in the Garden
Time to prune the Roses? Time to get out the Leather gauntlets to protect hands and forearms. But what about wearing eye protection too? Long whippy stems on Ramblers and climbing Roses have a nasty habit of flicking back and grabbing you. In fact any thorny branches need approaching with respect. I won’t go into details about my argument with a Berberis, many years ago, except to say, that little drama meant a visit to A & E and a Tetanus Jab.
Canes and Stakes in the garden should all have caps on if they are below head height. Many plants sold in Garden centres which come with a cane or three in the pot, have Rubber caps on the canes, keep those and re-use them. You can buy rubber or plastic ones. Recycle small empty fizzy drink bottles, just pop them on to the exposed end of each cane. You can even use those empty little bottles of probiotic drinks. Not the most beautiful solutions but practical ones. Alternatively use small terracotta pots or even empty Snail shells, if you want something a bit more decorative.
Which reminds me, one winter my husband fell on a slippery path where he was working. He landed heavily causing minor injury but thankfully no broken bones. However his face landed on a pruned shrub and cut his cheek but it could have been his eye…….
Real life gardening
Gardens are to be enjoyed, worked in, and played in. I am not for wrapping us all up in cotton wool. We cannot anticipate every single possibility. Accidents do happen. But we do have a duty to others, as well as ourselves, to keep the environment as safe as possible, and accidents to a minimum.
Don’t forget to make it as safe as possible for pets too. A few years ago when our puppies were racing around, one of them tore his face open on a sharp stump of a pruned shrub. Making angled pruning cuts prevents water rotting stems but don’t angle them so sharply that it leaves the stem at a dangerous point
You may suck your teeth and consider us a careless/dangerous household but I am just being real and honest here. It only takes a moment of distraction or laziness to have possibly long term consequences. Take my advice for safety in the garden, learn from my painful mistakes.
Give your garden a quick safety check up
- Look for trip hazards, check positioning and storage of canes and stakes.
- Remove broken greenhouse glass to a safe place until it can be disposed of properly.
- Keep a spare bucket or container to drop in anything that shouldn’t be left lying around (including plastic ties and wrappers you find in the compost! How do they get there?) until they can be disposed of safely
- Be informed about the hazards of using electrical gadgets.
- Keep Chemicals (if you must use them in your Garden) out of reach of Children. Label all containers, including homemade mixtures!
- Learn how to use Ladders safely on your plot.
This is only a brief overview for safety in the Garden. As gardeners we have a resposibility to take precautions. Protect yourself, your loved ones, and friends so they can enjoy every moment in your garden. No-one wants to have to visit the Accident and Emergency Department of your local Hospital.
On My Shopping List……..
- Safety Goggles
- Rubber Gloves
- Leather Gloves or Gauntlets
- Cane Caps
………..what’s on yours?………..