For years I’ve always roughed it in the garden. Seriously, if you can’t dig with your hands and get dirt stuck under your fingernails, you are a wimp. Well, tonight I feel like a wimp. I saw a tomatillo lying on the ground, pulled the plant out of the way, bent over to retrieve the tomatillo and promptly poked myself in the eye on a plant stem I didn’t see. I feel like I should be wearing safety glasses. I probably won’t, but my eye is tearing and in pain. So tonight while I’m putting cold compresses on my eye and thinking about how that plant managed to be where it was when I know I moved it out of the way; I’m going to discuss what you need to do to protect yourself while you garden in order to put home grown veggies on the table.
- Eye – Protection – maybe, but if I had my sunglasses on that probably would have worked. Besides protection from poking, it will keep your eyes in good shape and from being damaged by the sun. Sunglasses may help prevent cataracts, another good reason to wear them. They’ll also protect against bugs and flying dirt.
- Gloves - I never wore them until this year, I finally caved. Not only did it save me from dirts, cuts, and broken nails, but I was able to grip the weeds a lot better when pulling them out.
- Sunscreen – I don’t like sunburns or cancer, so I use it. Some sunscreens can actually be toxic in the long run, so look take a look a EcoKaren’s Post - scroll down to see the list.
- Hat – My balding husband always uses sunscreen and then puts on a hat or bandana, but he’s not the only one. I have plenty of hair, but I too wear a hat to keep the sun off. A burned scalp isn’t a pleasant thing to deal with.
- Boots or shoes – I’m guilty of wearing sandals in the garden and having rocks or bugs get to my feet, but I hate the most when a snake slithers over it. You also don’t want a dropped tool, like a shovel to hit your foot and tear it up.
- Sleeves and Legs - This depends. If I am working in my bed and there isn’t much heavy work, I will wear short sleeves and shorts or capris. However, if I am hacking bushes, or pulling poison ivy I wear sleeves and legs.
- A kneeling pad – or even a bucket – this is a way to help protect your knees from wear and tear. It may seem like such an old person thing, but believe me being an old person is something to aspire to. The alternative is not so nice.
What about you? What do you do to protect yourself in the garden?
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