Safety In The Garden

If you’ve seen comedy sketches garden rakes are mostly used to step on and fly up into the face of an unsuspecting individual whilst we all laugh at poor unsuspecting soul.

Although great for the entertainment market we definitely don’t want the same thing to happen in our gardens, so Gardenhood thought we would write this little blog piece on safety in the garden.

Before we head into the tips – a reminder to watch out in summer when all the spiders and snakes are out in force.   That’s probably the biggest tip we can give you right now.    If you keep your shoes out on the porch shake them and make sure you wear gloves and covered shoes outdoors.

On the weekend, I helped my nieces in Maroubra prepare their raised garden bed soil in readiness for a big herb and vegetable patch for the new year.      Tara noticed a Redback spider right in the garden bed and unfortunately it had lots of little children.

We called in Mark, their Irish-Australian dad, to do the killing, whilst we embarrassingly shrieked in the background.

Gardenhood
Redback – see this spider, if it bites you….

Now we have covered the most important current Australian summer gardening safety tip, let’s dive in to year round tips to keep everyone safe in the garden:

Garden Tools 

  • Keep rake handles on the head or the teeth themselves can cause injury.
  • Don’t leave garden tools, hoses, watering cans or other solid objects lying about for people to trip over. Sharp tools, such as rakes, forks, hoes, spades, secateurs and shears, should be stored so that children cannot reach them and so that they do not fall over or off shelves and injure people.
  • Watch your step – keep your steps and paths solid and stable with a non-skid surface.   When using a ladder make sure the ladder’s feet will not move before you start climbing-flat pieces of wood under the feet should do the trick.
  • Any cuts received from garden tools should always be washed in warm water and a disinfectant solution. Be careful when using a rotary mower.
  • Before mowing remove any stones or pebbles from the lawn as these may be caught in the blades and injure you or someone else.
  • Wear solid boots or gum-boots, and always push the mower forward and don’t pull it backwards.

Pools and Spas

  • Pools should always be fenced and spas covered, especially when children are present. Ensuring your pool surfaces are non-slip and locking the gate are two ‘must do’s’.    Covering the pool is two-fold, it creates coverage from leaves and other debris as well as keeping the pool safe from animals and insects.

Chemicals

  • If you do use chemicals then follow these guidelines to keep every safe when they visit your garden.
  • Store garden chemicals and fertilizers out of reach of children and pets.
  • Read, understand and follow the label.  Take special note of the rate of application and the safety directions. Never use kitchen utensils to measure pesticides.
  • Make sure the chemical is registered to control the pest you are using it for.
  • Do not spray under adverse weather conditions, eg. windy days or days when temperatures are above 30 degree celsius.    Only mix enough for the one job so that you do not have to dispose of the excess.
  • Do not store unused “made up” sprays.   Made up chemical can deteriorate from microbes and UV light.
  • It is illegal to decant and store chemicals from their original containers into containers, which are not specifically designed for this purpose. Store your chemicals in a secure, dry, cool shed or cupboard dedicated to that purpose.

Pets

  • If you have pets who are prone to digging make sure you cover the holes as they appear and try to keep pets away from digging temptation!
  • Summer time in Australia means snakes and one bite from a snake could ruin your pet’s Christmas so please keep them inside or close by if you are surrounded by bush.

If you have any garden safety tips to share – we would love to hear from you.

Gardenhood – Grown with Love