10 Gardening Tools you Must Have

This is the first post in my gardening basics series where I will focus on the essential aspects of gardening for beginner gardeners. Gardening tools are essential for every gardener, and the right tools will save a lot of time and efforts. This is a list of some of the ‘must have’ tools which take care of the essential tasks of gardening. It is also important to keep your garden tools clean and well maintained to ensure durability.

gardening tools

Gardening Gloves

Yes gardening is a very gratifying hobby, but you need to protect your hands from the splinters, thorns and even insects. Keep a pair of sturdy gardening gloves handy and make sure you keep them clean and dry.  You can choose from a range of gloves starting from synthetic gloves, latex gloves and even leather ones for more heavy duty jobs.

Hand Trowel

Hand trowels are handy for little jobs of digging up the corners, planting herbs and even removing weeds. Go for stainless steel trowels for durability.

Hand Fork

This is another handy little tool which is great for weeding, planting smaller plants or dividing plants in a bed.

Hand weeder

Weeds are a recurring problem in every garden and sometimes, you need a specialist tool to deal with it. A hand weeder has a thin, sharp blade to removes surface weeds while the long handle allows you to dig deeper and take out weeds far into beds.


Spades are essential to dig up holes for plants and cleaning up heaps of soil from the garden. It’s a handy tool that is capable of multi tasking around the garden. Buy a spade with a strong steel head and a solid fiberglass handle. A sturdy spade will last you for years if you use it well and care for it regularly.


If your garden spans a large area, a wheelbarrow is a must. It is ideal to move around soil, heaps of mulch or garden tools and other stuff. Invest in a well made two handed wheelbarrow with a durable drum.

Leaf Rake

Fallen leaves around the garden are a cumbersome task to clean up. A leaf rake makes the job easier by cleaning away the raking leaves, twigs, grass clippings, and other light debris from lawns. You can go for a stainless steel or a even a plastic one if it is not likely to see heavy use.


This long handled tool is useful to reach the weeds from your thick garden vegetation and can prove handy with all the digging work. Choose a hoe to suit your particular garden- a sturdy and wide one for a vegetable garden and a thin headed hoe for delicate plants and flower beds.


Shears are essential for all the trimming work in your garden. You can elegantly cut away the grass around your garden fence, tree trunks and garden paths. It also is a good tool for cutting the ornamental grass or perennials.


Scissors are essential for cutting away the dried flowers, cutting soft stemmed plants and herbs, pruning jobs and snipping away at twines. Go for a stainless steel one with a spring action which is easier on the hands.

Yard & Landscaping

Lawn Maintenance

Clean up your lawn of any leaves, weeds and moss before the winter arrives. Ensure good drainage by digging deep holes with spike machine or a fork. Keep off the lawn during the winter months to avoid any damage.

Don’t forget the Garden Structures

Check and clean your garden structures like fences, sheds and greenhouses. Also check for any signs of decay or wear and tear which might not be able to withstand the rough winds and cold.

Mulching is important

Mulch plays a key role to keep your garden healthy and warm during the winter. In addition to acting as a weed controller, mulch also does a good job of keeping the soil warm and moist. Decomposing organic matter creates heat and a thick layer of mulch will protect the roots and bulbs from the frost while retaining the moisture in the soil.

If you need any more tips or advice for your specific concern, do write to me. I will be glad to help.


Welcome to Blue Ridge Orchid Society

“A garden is a grand teacher. It teaches patience and careful watchfulness; it teaches industry and thrift; above all it teaches entire trust.”

 Gertrude Jekyll

This blog is devoted to all the gardening enthusiasts like me whose passion is gardening.  We live quite hectic and stressful lives, and there is nothing like a beautiful garden to soothe those strained nerves and calm the soul. It doesn’t matter if your garden is a small home garden in your terrace or a grand affair with lawns and lakes. A garden is so much more than what meets the eye. As Gertrude Jekyll puts it so eloquently, a garden teaches you life skills that are vital to succeed in every area of life. All those hours spent under the sun, getting your hands muddy and the days of loving care are fully justified when you see your garden blooming in its full glory. In many ways, it is an allegory for life itself. For what you plant into your garden is exactly what you will get back when the season is right.

Are you new to gardening or a seasoned gardener looking for more knowledge?

Wondering how to create a garden in your little city apartment?

Looking for tips to keep your garden healthy and pest free?

Need advice about adding exotic plants and flowers in your garden?

With The Blue Ridge Orchid Society blog, I aim to help you with these and more of your gardening needs including gardening advice, gardening ideas, garden designs, experts talks, gardening tips and much more so that you can have a lovely little garden full of splendour in every season. I will also regularly share pictures of all the beautiful, quaint, grand, lovely gardens that I visit and also the stories behind them. You too are welcome to interact with me and fellow gardeners.

Wonderful herb and flower garden
Wonderful herb and flower garden

This first post is just a glimpse of things yet to come. Please do check back regularly for lots of gardening information and tips. Check out the pictures of my own home garden and some of the gardens I have helped create for friends and family.

So what do you think? Check back soon for my new post. So long!

Winter Care for Your Garden

Top Winter Gardening Tips to Keep Your Garden in Good Shape

With gardening, many of us tend to ignore our gardens in the winter months. Yes, the weather is not ideal to grow anything much in the garden, but we definitely need to take care of the plants and trees so they remain in top condition for the spring and summer months.

Winter Pruning
Winter Pruning

Here are my top winter gardening tips for your garden:

Plan Ahead

Arm yourself with as much information as you can get about the expected weather conditions. Get an estimate of when frost is likely to set in and the approximate depth of the frost line. You can then set out to prepare your garden to survive the winter weather.

Clean garden tools and equipments

Do make sure all the gardening tools which you used are cleaned up properly before you store them away for the winter. Oil all the metal parts to prevent rust from setting again. Remove all the dust and the rust from the tools, pots and pans. If necessary, use mild a detergent and disinfectant to get the job well done. Make sure all the tools are dried thoroughly before they are stored. This will save you extra work when you have to take up gardening again in the spring.

Care for Bulbs

As mentioned in the first point, you will have to remove the bulbs from your garden before the frost sets in. If you live where it gets very cold, it’s ideal to dig out the bulbs and store them in a cool, dark place in your garden shed. If it’s a bit warmer, you can remove, separate and replant the bulbs for maintenance. Ensure that you add a fertilizer like bone meal in the soil when you plant the bulbs for faster root growth.

Cover them up

Protect young trees and plants from the frost by covering them well with a cloth or sack. Do not use plastic or any other material to cover them as these might trap extra moisture and thus damage the plant inside. A sturdy fabric covering is always ideal as it keeps out the frost while providing proper ventilation.

Don’t forget the Garden Structures

Check and clean your garden structures like fences, sheds and greenhouses. Also check for any signs of decay or wear and tear which might not be able to withstand the rough winds and cold.