How to Get Blue Hydrangeas

If you love blue flowers (and who doesn't?), one of the most popular must-have plants for your garden is hydrangea. These versatile shrubs produce giant ball-shape flowers that look stunning in the landscape surrounding your home, as specimen plants in your garden, and make gorgeous (and easy!) bouquets.

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Flowering Perennials from Spring to Fall

Turn your garden into a color show spring through fall. Here are 17 easy-to-grow flowering perennials.

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Garden Pictures That Inspire

Garden pictures can provide inspiration. Browse our gallery of garden pictures, including landscape garden pictures, to find the picture of a garden that will give you your perfect landscape.

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Growing Lilies and Daylilies in Your Garden

Daylilies and lilies are two big-impact, easy-to-grow plants for your summer garden.

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How to Grow Potatoes

Growing potatoes is easy, and you'll find the taste of homegrown potatoes much better than that of store-bought versions. You can grow potatoes in just a few easy steps. Learn how to grow potatoes, as well as how to harvest them for maximum flavor.

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Urban Gardens

Living in a space-challenged urban environment shouldn't stop you from enjoying fresh air. Check out these great ideas from some amazing city landscapes.

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How to Get Beautiful Texture in Your Garden

Add beauty and texture to your garden with leafy and flowering perennials, annuals, and grasses.

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Popular in Gardening

Garden Tool Care

Keep your shovels, rakes, and more ready to go with these steps to good garden tool care.

After a long day out in the yard and landscape, you might be tempted to simply toss your garden tools into the shed. But proper maintenance prevents future problems. Here are garden tool care tips to help you take care of and store your shovels, rakes, trowels, and more.

Store your garden tools in style with these cottage-inspired solutions.

Tune the Lawn Mower

In the spring, tune your lawn mower engine by replacing the spark plug and oil; clean the filter. You should also replace the lawn mower blade or have it sharpened.

Learn more about sharpening your lawn mower blade.

Examine Pruning Tools

Spring is the time to take a look at all your pruning tools to see if you practiced good garden tool care. Did each one receive a good cleaning at the end of the previous year's gardening season? If not, clean and oil all pruning tools, and sharpen the blades if needed.

Your pruning tools need regular sharpening based on how often you use them. Start your garden tool care by cleaning the tool; open it wide or remove the blade. Clamp it in a vise. Next, to sharpen your pruning tools, soak a medium-grain whetstone or medium flat file in water or light oil. Lightly move the stone along the edge of the blade from base to tip. Repeat until the edge is sharp, taking care to not file it too thin. (The edge will nick too easily if it's too thin.) To finish sharpening your pruning tools, use a fine-grain whetstone or file. Remove burrs on the back of the blade. Wipe the blade with an oily rag or spray with an antirust lubricant.

Learn more about caring for your pruning shears.

Store Cold Frames

As spring transitions into summer, put away some garden tools and helpers, including cold frames. However, take time to clean out the cold frame and repair it before storing so it will be ready to use for fall seeding of vegetables.

Learn how to make a cold frame.

Scrub and Scrape Hand Tools

After each use but before putting away cultivators, shovels, and rakes, remove all dirt and debris for the best garden tool care. Scrape off dirt with a putty knife; remove rust and mud with a wire brush. Do this after each use: Those few minutes scrubbing and scraping will save you time -- and money -- in the long run. Each time you use pruning tools, wipe them with an oiled rag.

Learn more about sharpening garden hand tools.

Store Soil and Fertilizer

After each use, label and seal bags of soil and fertilizer. Keep them in a waterproof container or up on a shelf out of the way of potential moisture.

Store Tools for Autumn and Winter

Once the gardening season winds down, you'll have to complete a few autumn garden tool care to-dos. That includes dipping blades of shovels, hoes, and trowels into a bucket of sand mixed with a little lightweight machine oil.

Maintain Gas-Powered Tools

In autumn, your gas-powered tools, including lawn mowers, need their own garden tool care. To winterize gasoline engines, run them until they are empty, or fill the tank with gas and add fuel stabilizer. Remove spark plugs, pour a teaspoon of oil into the cylinder, turn the engine over several times, and replace the spark plugs.

Organize Tools

Storage is part of good garden tool care. Hang long-handle tools on wall organizers or hooks to keep the tools from colliding or becoming entangled. Store small tools such as pruners or scissors in a walletlike organizer.

Check out our garden tool organization secrets!

Set Aside Garden Hoses

Coil up your garden hoses on a hanger after each use. At growing season's end, drain your garden hoses, connect the ends, and store indoors away from the elements for a final step in garden tool care.

Care for Your Pruning Shears


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