Love it or hate it gardening is one of life’s relentless challenges. How can you even contemplate keeping on top of it all though, especially when, I am about to recommend you remember to pace yourself and consider your posture, but one way or another, as the weather improves tackling this is a must:
Why do we even have gardens when they are such hard work?
There’s nothing like sitting outside admiring your handy-work on a summer evening, chatting with friends over a barbecue or playing swing-ball with your kids. I wouldn’t, however, recommend an inflatable limbo set from amazon, that will definitely end in tears.
So, what is the answer?
If you can maximise your garden enjoyment by minimising your workload and therefore your spinal risk with low maintenance options, then you are onto a winner. This approach can be great due to its modern aesthetic appeal and the promise of easy care, which will hopefully just leave you a few pots to water.
Have you considered going artificial? This might feel like the ultimate solution, but you’ll probably just end up swapping your mower for a hoover! So unless you really need astroturf why not consider a natural eco-friendly low maintenance alternative such as a cultivating a wildflower meadow or planting a sedum lawn.
If this is not for you then perhaps getting someone in might help you avoid all those garden pitfalls!
Raised beds are another option, but what are the benefits? There is more room for the roots to spread in search of nourishment, so you won’t need to water as often, therefore there’ll be less need for heavy watering can carrying once that hosepipe ban kicks in.
Although from a back-care perspective it is well worth considering filling your can with less water and consequently making more trips, to reduce the strain caused by heavy lifting and carrying.
Weeds cannot spread as far in a confined space and tightly packed plants will crowd them out further, again reducing your workload. Learning to like your weeds may also be well worth consideration.
Bending and reaching are a great cause for concern, raised beds can help on this front too as crouching may be sufficient and if you can get all the way around the outside of them then this will cut down on your need to over stretch.
Otherwise, long handled tools can greatly reduce your bending requirements, and where this cannot be avoided padded kneelers can make all the difference, limiting your time and varying your tasks will also help plus please avoid digging and invest in some good quality supportive garden chairs if at all possible.
But whatever your approach to gardening I hope you get to make the most of your outdoor space this year.
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