When the local Goodwill has stuffed animals on sale 10/$1.00 I buy any that have real big eyes or that look like snakes. They get laid on the ground between rows or stuck onto tall sticks like comical scarecrows, to discourage coons from entering the garden. You can also cut the head off of those real large stuffed bears and put them on sticks, as well, to scare off coons. Little kids will love your garden!
Leaking Hose Pipe
Once a bed is planted up & watered in well, cover with about 1 cm of fine wood chips. When plants are established water well, if needed, then put in a 'leaking hose pipe' (made from recycled tires) in a ring about 8 cm from stems. Connect to hose & after a trial to see if the water is going exactly where needed, cover with large bark chips. This method retains moisture, reduces weeds & cuts watering to about 20 minutes every week. [Note: 'Leaking hose pipe is another term for soaker hose.]
Create a New Bed with Leaves
Start a new bed in Autumn by placing heavy cover of leaves on the spot then pin a plastic sheet over & leave until late spring. The result will be a spade deep loam easy to turn over during summer when further nutrients are applied ready for late Summer or Autumn planting.
Late Season Containers
I wanted something "Halloweeny" to put pansies in for Halloween. The local Supercenter sells jack-o-lantern trick or treat buckets for 97 cents each. I bought 2, drilled some holes in the bottom, filled them with gravel and potting soil and have great planters. I will transplant the pansies somewhere else in the garden after Halloween & clean out the buckets and save them for next year.
Cucumbers as Insect Deterrent
Put sliced cucumbers on metal trays and place them all around garden for a simple bug deterrent.
Handling Rose Prunings
I save old shower curtains for pruning roses, simply use the cutters to lay the long branches on the curtain and it drags easily to the scrap area, no more falling out of the wheel barrow.
You know the plastic netting bags that onions come in at the grocery store? Late this summer I figured out how to use them on my tomatoes. Every time I had a tomato start to pink up this summer and I would think I was going to be picking it in a few days, the squirrels or birds got to it first. So, I took those onion bags and cut them in half, and wrapped them around my tomatoes when they started pinking up. That way, I got to eat them instead of the birds. I secured the "booties" with bread twists.
A Compost Bonus
Always have a compost heap. Not only does your garden profit but the snails & slugs prefer rotting vegetation to fresh.
Extend the Life of Your Gloves
I tend to poke through the tips of my gardening gloved after weeding with them for a few months. I found that adding splotch of Goop( available in several forms I use the household version) on the end will extend their lives. Simply clean the fingertips thoroughly,add the Goop making sure the finger tips stay separate, Let dry overnight and the gloves are good to go.
I recycle my old shower curtain liners to the back of my vehicle to protect it from dirt and water when buying plants.
—Guest susan chelf
Controlling Fungus Gnats
To combat fungus gnats in the house I simply use a hoover and hose to suck them up (squash them at night when they are sleepy), before they get to adult size and start to mate and lay eggs in compost. Also put sticky tape round rim of pots which acts like fly paper.
Getting Rid of Bamboo
Have you ever tried getting rid of bamboo??? I think I found something that works. Clear it all down to ground level. With a drill and a 1/4 inch blade bit, bore into the root until you hit live plant (greenish). Then put undiluted blackberry killer herbicide in the hole. I use a large syringe. None I have treated have sprouted in the last month. I am keeping my fingers crossed.
Use dried neem leaves for potted plants to keep away all types of plant pests and insects.