Great gardening gear for spring

For some of us, the arrival of spring means one thing: Gardening season is here! As elemental as breathing, the simple act of turning over
sleepy soil, planting seeds and lovingly maintaining your section of earth that will eventually bear flowers or vegetables renews us year after year. Lucky for the gardener, each season brings new and improved tools, accessories and yes—even fashions—to make the reunion with the soil that much sweeter.
The Fashion:
Aprons, Gloves and Footwear New York, Paris and Milan may be host to spring fashion shows that highlight collections of clothing that most of us will never own, but Central Virginia has its own spring line. And the best part of all? All of these seasonal essentials are available locally.

  • Garden Goddess Apron: Ready for a surprise? Put your hands in the roomy pockets to find the cheery polka-dotted gloves. (Available at John Simmons)
  • Apron by MaggiB: This laminated apron with extra-deep pockets comes in a jaunty pattern featuring birds and botanicals. (Available at Portobello Road)
  • The Perfect Apron: For the truly stylish gardener. Functional and attractive, this piece is emblazoned with a tool-filled wheelbarrow. (Available at The Farm Basket)
  • The Mud Glove: These durable gloves come in apple green, red, tangerine and yellow. (Available at John Simmons)
  • Bionic Multi-Task Gloves: Some experts say that these gloves are great for gardeners who suffer from arthritis. (Available at Virginia Lawn and Garden)
  • Atlas Gloves “fit like a second skin.” The tough, nitrile coating and breathable nylon liner make these machine-washable gloves a must-have. (Available at Virginia Lawn and Garden)
  • Angela’s Garden toile-patterned gloves. Perfectly pretty! (Available at The Farm Basket)
  • Bogs Garden Boots: Just try to feel shabby in these boots. With pull-on neoprene tops, removable antimicrobial insoles and high-traction outsoles, these beauties are comfortable and have great traction. (Available at Plow and Hearth)
  • Sloggers offers a line of lightweight yet durable clogs and snazzy boots meant for gardening in the muddiest of conditions. (Available at John Simmons)

The Tools
Stock your outdoor tool kit with these durable, lightweight and eye-catching tools. You’ll be much more likely to get to work with easy-to-use (and good looking!) gadgets.

  • Good Grips OXO watering cans: The name says it all. Just about everything made by this company is a dream to use thanks to the soft, non-slip grips. OXO watering cans are unique in that the rosette (this refers to the spout) is both removable and rotates to make watering hard-to reach plants a breeze. Available in 3.17 quart and 2.11 gallon sizes, and in vibrant colors. (Available at John Simmons)
  • Bulb planter by OXO: The “quick-release” feature enables the gardener to plant bulbs with ease, and most importantly, gives measurements so you can plant bulbs in the right depth. Simply push, twist and pull to remove soil to plant bulb. (Available at John Simmons)
  • Good Grips hand rake and trowel: The tines adjust and lock from 3 inches for tight spaces to 12 inches for larger areas. Tines retract for compact storage. These ergonomically friendly tools allow two position grips for reach and control. (Available at John Simmons)
  • Radius garden cultivator: This tool’s advanced ergonomic design maximizes your power and comfort while minimizing stress on your hand and wrist. Additional tools in this line include hand trowels, transplanters and weeders. (Available at Virginia Lawn and Garden)
  • Slimmer Trimmer: The lightweight, pint-sized design of these perfectly precise pruning shears is a favorite of gardeners and floral arrangers alike. (Available at The Farm Basket)

The Extras
Add some of these goodies to your wheelbarrow and you’ll be the talk of the flower bed.

  • Plant labels in ornamental copper and zinc: Each package includes a pen for marking the copper labels, and a carbonleaded pencil for marking the zinc labels. (Available at Virginia Lawn and Garden)
  • Rapitest determines pH balance of the soil. Test results instantly tell how acidic or alkaline the soil is, which in turn enable you to check which plants suit your garden or if you need to alter your soil condition. (Available at Virginia Lawn and Garden)
  • The Garden Kneeler is a portable bench and kneeling pad. One side is a sturdy, portable bench seat. Flip the whole thing over for a comfortable kneeling pad with handles. Sports an anti-rust finish, all-steel construction. At $40, it makes for a welcome Mother’s Day gift. (Available at Virginia Lawn and Garden)
  • Crabtree and Evelyn Hard Working Hand Care soothes and softens skin that has been elbow-deep in dirt all day. (Available at John Simmons).
  • For the gardener: lemongrass and lavender-scented shea butter. This stuff really works on cracked, rough hands that have been toiling in the soil. (Available at Portobello Road)
  • Garden in a Bag: These prettily-packaged seeds grow right in their own leak-proof bag. They work well indoors or out, on a windowsill, or under a lamp. Grow basil, mini-tomatoes, chives, catnip, sage, dill, oregano and more. (Available at Portobello Road)
  • Rice Hull Gardens: Talk about green gardening! The actual container in this little package is made from rice hulls, which are 100 percent biodegradable. Selections include lemon basil, garlic chives, mint, lavender and parsley. (Available at Portobello Road)
  • Wrought iron tool hanger: The letters “TOOLS” form the body of this delightful yet functional piece. (Available at The Farm Basket)

This spring, take a little garden tour of your own. Wake up one Saturday morning when the pull of the season is too strong to resist and visit some local stores. Check out the gear that is sure to make for many sunny days in the garden.

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