Finally, the sun has come out. Well, sort of. As gardeners, we know and appreciate all the water that Mother Nature has given us this year. But we need some sun to get those veggies growing and flowers blooming!
Before heading into the garden with tools in hand, don’t forget a couple simple things:
- With prolonged time spent in the sun, don’t just put sunblock on your face; lather some on your hands, calves, ears, scalps and necks too!
- Those damn little deer ticks are out there, and because they are so tiny to the eye, they can be almost impossible to spot. It’s best to wear light-colored clothing when gardening . Checking yourself often is a MUST. This includes checking your animals carefully before they climb into bed with you after a day shared in the yard. Lyme Disease is no fun, and for many people, infection has lifetime consequences.
- Before you sink your spade into the ground, be sure you’re not cutting into underground cable or electrical lines. Having your local utility companies mark the lines before you dig will not only save you from costly repair work, but will also avoid serious physical harm or shock.
- Wear gloves to protect your hands from injury, poison ivy and insect bites. Not to mention that if you have cats or dogs using the yard as a porta-potty, you risk getting a bad case of worms. Gloves, gloves, gloves!
- And, speaking of poison ivy, oak or sumac, learn to identify them on-the-fly. The old saying “leaves of three, let them be” is still the ditty to dance to for ivy and oak. For sumac, it’s all about the red stem. Run! Run right to the weed killer. OUCH! Whenever you’re out in the yard where these items grow, wear long sleeves, gloves and long pants. And before touching any exposed skin, wash your hands (and gloves) in dishwashing soap; not hand soap. Like your dirty dishes, dish soap is designed to break down oil and grease; exactly what the nasty plants produce.