2011-03-17 / Features

Shortcuts To Make Yard Work Easier

Spring is in the air – a time for rejuvenation and renewal ... and for getting your yard back in shape.

If you’re like most Americans, you love your garden and the budding trees of the new season, but don’t want to spend all your precious weekends toiling away at yard work and lawn care.

Here are some easy shortcuts for getting yard work done in less time and with less effort this season:

The easy way out

When doing yard work, it’s easiest to stand – constant kneeling and crouching will tire you out sooner and make you more likely to experience back and knee pain later on. If you need to get low to the ground, bring a low stool with you to sit on.

And give your body a break by transporting all your tools in a kiddie wagon. Or you can use a collapsible wheelbarrow with a wire frame and nylon bag. Choose a lightweight one that also stores easily and compactly in a garage or tool shed. They are available at home improvement stores and online at sites like bedbathandbeyond.com.

Get the right tools

Choosing garden tools with longer handles will also reduce your bending and kneeling. You may want to use ones with padded grips, although gardening gloves are always advisable since insects and spiders can lay dormant in dead foliage and debris.

Consider using add-ons to your current tools to increase your efficiency. For example, PowerSharp, a chainsaw sharpening system from Oregon-brand outdoor products, lets chainsaw users sharpen chain on the saw, on the job, in seconds. This helps get yard work done faster and with relative ease, especially when faced with tough chores requiring sharp chains, such as pruning and trimming. To learn more, visit www.powersharp.com.

Hone your focus

“Most people immediately think of their lawns when they think of seasonal yard work” says Chris Seigneur, Senior Product Development Engineer for Blount, the makers of PowerSharp. “But trimming dead branches from your trees and shrubs will ensure their health and add to the beauty of your home.”

You should also clear plant beds of dead foliage, which can smother budding greenery and foster disease. And when reseeding your lawn, it’s best to stay off it for at least two weeks to allow the grass to grow.

Lastly, some more permanent fixtures can save you time and effort in the long run. Native plants and flowers will grow more easily since they do not need the care and attention of exotic transplants. And an automatic sprinkler system will keep your yard lush and green with little thought.

With these adjustments to your yard tools and routine, you should be able to spend more time outdoors enjoying your yard than trimming its trees and shrubs. And isn’t that what the weekend’s for?

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