Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Favorite Tools

Found this photo in my file - Our World Garden -no idea where I got it from - but I'd love to have this as a poster. Now that my sad excuse for a garden is more or less done this year, it's time to put away the tools - clean them, sharpen them, perhaps sink them in a bucket of sand with a little oil thrown in.

Some the tools pictured I've never seen in person and I haven't a clue what they're used for. Others I've seen hanging on the walls of sheds and workshops at estate sales. Once at an estate sale my mother found her perfect hoe - turned out it was a tobacco hoe with a narrow sharp blade in place of the more common 4-5" wide one. She loves it.

This is my favorite tool. It's a heavy weight Japanese hoe, perfect for weeding, digging pant-size holes, moving mulch back around them. It's badly in need of a couple shims since the wooden handle has dried and shrunk after years of use, so occasionally the head loosens and slides down. I bought a replacement early this spring, but still reach for this one. Eventually the new one will get a chance to earn it's place.

And this is the newest addition - a sortof short Japanese square hoe, also found at an estate sale. It hasn't been used, still has the stickers on it. The blade is about 3" wide and it's built better than it looks. Perfect for doing narrow rows of lettuce.

The tools may not get a rest this year since I'm working on a plan to better insulate the greenhouse to produce all winter, and also grow some tomatoes and lettuce in my office. We have great southern exposure windows that might just work. My dream, of course, is to glass in the front porch and make it in a greenhouse all winter.

Of course with global warming, our winters are being diminshed to a few weeks in January.

Pretty soon we'll be gardening year round.

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