6 PRACTICAL TOOLS
Check out these cool gadgets to help grow all your favorite foods.
WRITTEN BY CHRISTINA NELLEMANN
PHOTOS COURTESY OF MANUFACTURERS
Even die-hard vegetable gardeners will come up with excuses not to garden. However, having the right tools and gear not only makes gardening easier and more efficient, but also more joyful. These handy tools, chosen by Reno-Tahoe nursery owners and managers, will encourage both expert and novice gardeners to go outside and get dirty.
In our dry climate, water quickly evaporates from the soil, leaving plants suffering in the hot sun. Adding an Oya or two to your garden beds can help keep them moist through the warmest days. What looks like a curvy clay pot actually is a porous irrigation tool that slowly releases water to the roots of plants. Just bury the Oya in the ground, fill it with water, and refill every few days.
Available at Villager Nursery. $24.99 (small)
2) Green Thumb Dump Cart
The real workhorse of the backyard has to be the garden cart. From hauling yard waste, compost, and soil to gathering summer’s bounty of tomatoes and squash, this handy tool always will be by your side. The Green Thumb Dump Cart not only makes dumping easier, but also the wheels pivot to make pulling and turning in a small space painless. The cart’s polypropylene bed won’t rust, and its low profile doesn’t take up much room in the yard.
Available at Moana Nursery. $84
3) Green Thumb Quick Connect
Pawl Hollis, owner of Rail City Garden Center in Sparks, says that customers who buy one Quick Connect nearly always will come back for several more. The Green Thumb Quick Connect brass connector set easily attaches a hose to a sprinkler nozzle or other hose-end accessory. When you want to remove the accessory, a brief pull on the connector will release it without having to waste time twisting and cursing.
Available at Rail City Garden Center. $8.99
4) Smart Pot
For gardeners who want to keep it simple, the Smart Pot fabric container is, well, smart. These collapsible pots can be set up and filled with soil and your favorite vegetables in just minutes. The pots are made in the USA, are BPA free, maintain airflow, and support healthy root growth and side branching. They can be placed in both small and large gardens, and at the end of the season, the soil can be dumped out and the pots folded and stored.
Available at Greenhouse Garden Center. One gallon, $3; 100 gallons, $36.99
5) Garden Works Left and Right Hand Angle Weeders
Not all gardeners’ hands are made the same. Garden Works has remedied this with its Left and Right Hand Angle Weeders. The weeders not only are more ergonomic, but also this American-made tool has serrated teeth and a barbed tip for ripping and snagging weeds from the ground and pathway cracks. The angled leverage pulls out weeds cleanly without leaving behind roots, and the stainless-steel blade won’t rust. The color-coded handles also are bright enough to see in a green garden.
Available at Greenhouse Garden Center. $22.99
6) Hori-hori gardening knife
Samantha and Sutter Stremmel, owners of Sierra Water Gardens and The Wedge Ceramics Studio in Reno, know intimately what it’s like to maintain a large garden. Their ultimate tool of choice is a hori-hori gardening knife, and they say they panic when they can’t find it around their riverside garden shop. Hori-hori means dig dig in Japanese, and the multipurpose tool can be used for weeding, cutting roots and sod, transplanting, and measuring. The hori-hori ranges from affordable designs to more expensive, higher-quality versions.
Ames True Temper Garden Tool hori-hori available at Villager Nursery, $9.99; Burpee hori-hori at Burpee.com, $24.95; and Barebones Hori Hori available at Gardener’s Supply Co., Gardeners.com, $29.95
(Editor note: photo credit for hori-hori is W. Atlee Burpee & Co.)
Christina Nellemann is a writer and gardener living in Washoe Valley. While her favorite gardening product is her 30-year-old wheelbarrow, the hori-hori knife is next on her list.
Greenhouse Garden Center
2450 S. Curry St., Carson City • 775-882-8600 • Greenhousegardencenter.com
1100 W. Moana Lane, Reno • 775-825-0600
11301 S. Virginia St., Reno • 775-853-1319
7655 Pyramid Hwy., Sparks • 775-425-4300
Rail City Garden Center
1720 Brierley Way, Sparks • 775-355-1551 • Railcitygardencenter.com
10678 Donner Pass Road, Truckee • 530-587-0771 • Villagernursery.com