A garden should be a place of relaxation; beautiful, serene, timeless. The soft trickle of the fountain ornament, the fluttering of butterflies as they go about their day; the feel of the sun on your back as you weed your flower beds. A garden is tranquility itself.
Or, it should be.
The sad fact is that no matter how good a garden looks, it can be harboring all manner of unpleasantness. Gardening might be posited as a wonderful hobby that is rich in benefits for mind, body, and soul – but there are rarely a mention of the damage that gardening can do. It’s somewhat deceptive, too. If a newbie gardener embarked on a project with the fierce belief that everything will just be wonderful, they will swiftly learn that there are hazards at every turn.
In the name of keeping things safe, it’s often worth an investigation into the problems the most serene of hobbies can sometimes bring to the fore. And so as to avoid just shouting about problems, we’ll run through the solutions too – so you can make your gardening experience as pleasant and hazard-free as possible.
HAZARD! Bites & Stings
There’s no doubt about it; your garden isn’t yours. Oh sure, you might own the land it sits on, but it’s not your element, your habitat. It belongs to the bugs, the spiders, the pests – you’re just the invader who steps into their space every once in awhile. It’s tough to blame these insects, but it’s also tough to just give them a pass. They’re not paying the mortgage, so you’ve got every right to go about your garden business without worrying about being eaten alive.
Obviously, the best solution against bites and stings is to wear insect repellant. So that’s easy right – hazard avoided?
Try and avoid insect repellents that contain a chemical known as DEET. There is some evidence that DEET is toxic to humans. It’s also incredibly toxic to mosquitos, which is why it’s popular. If you want extra protection sometimes, then products containing DEET are fine for a one-off usage. However, for regular use, there are plenty of DEET-free alternatives you can try to keep your skin non-nibbled.
Unless you’re an organic gardener, you will probably use some form of pest control when it comes to your garden. Perhaps you use it to try and protect your flowers from being munched on by aphids; or trying to keep your lawn from being destroyed by caterpillars. There are plenty of uses for pesticide that can help your garden look wonderful.
However, it’s worth asking… will the effect on you be quite so good?
Pesticides are killers; that’s their entire purpose. Their intent in life is to cause harm. If you regularly expose yourself to the same chemicals you use for pest control, then you might be running a risk with your health. It’s far less hazardous to look for the services of companies such as Chem-Free Organic Pest & Lawn that can help with the maintenance of your garden, without a huge dose of potentially toxic material to assist.
The occasional use of a pesticide is not going to hurt you – the problem comes when you use them over and over. So occasionally sub in some help from the toxic-free pros to save yourself from too much exposure.
HAZARD! Sharp Soil
Finally, a thought for some of the issues that can be caused by digging. Not only is digging into soil exhausting and painful if you go on for too long, but it can also turn up all kinds of issues. This is especially worrying if you are digging deeper than you ever have before.
Always use an implement to dig, especially at close quarters (such as when creating a hole for a specific plant). This helps to avoid the risk of your fingers being cut by a stray piece of metal, glass, or other debris that is known to accumulate in soil. This should be a serious consideration when gardening, even in familiar areas – you never know what might have been dropped there by birds or other animals.
If you do cut yourself – especially on metal – make sure you take the appropriate action. Go and wash the wound rather than soldiering on. For metal cuts, you might need a tetanus shot, so seek medical advice as soon as possible.
While gardening can be a truly wonderful hobby, it does have its issues. However, these problems shouldn’t dissuade you from getting out into your backyard and enjoying your favorite hobby – just be careful out there.