You find yourself looking at the perfect winter garden and then suddenly you realise there is something you have forgotten. Before the temperatures drops drastically you decide to complete this task as you go down your checklist. The garden shed needs cleaning, including your tools, garden products, and equipment.
Storing of seeds and fertilizers
When cleaning the shed we need to remember that any left over seeds should be placed in heavy duty plastic containers. Regardless of our efforts mice can wreak havoc on seeds during winter. If not sealed the mice will consume the seed as a winter food source, and so chew large holes in the product’s bag allowing product to spill everywhere.
Lawn and garden fertilizers should be stored in their original bags or containers. This will allow you to know the correct content and analysis of the product next season. Of course it is important to ensure the granular product is stored in a dry location; granular products can even absorb moisture from the air, causing the product to form a hard cake like cement. One tip would be to store the product with its original label or bag in a sealable plastic container; preventing moisture from getting in contact with the product.
When storing pesticides, ensure the location is safe for you, your family, and pets. Storing them in a locked location or out of reach of children or pets is best. Read the product’s label thoroughly for additional storage instructions.
Once the seed, fertilizer, and pesticides are put away it is time to clean.
Cleaning garden tools
Sharpen, repair and oil your tools and equipment. Give it one last cleaning before putting them away for winter. Soil tools such as shovels, rakes, forks, and hoes should be washed with a pressure washer. Wire-bristled brushes or other methods should be used to remove difficult soils such as clay. Dry off the tools after cleaning. Pruners and saws should be cleaned using a degreaser or a bleach solution (one part bleach to nine parts water). If tools are a bit rusted, sand it with a scotch-bride pad, as well as some deoxadine. This will remove access rust. Clean with clean water after and leave to dry.
To sharpen pruners or loppers, hold the shear flat against the palm of your hand with blades facing down. Sharpen the blade with a sharpening stone. To sharpen shovels, axes or spades use a hand file or powered grinder. Wear eye protection and use caution when sharpening all tools.
So don’t forget to do a pre-winter clean-up in your garden shed. You will appreciate the hard work you do now next spring, which lets you focus on making your yard and garden beautiful without having to worry about bad product or rusty tools.