Winter is the season when the garden, and the gardener, takes a rest. This is the ideal time to look after the maintenance of your tools. Cleaning, disinfecting, sharpening….every tool requires special treatment !
The winter break will soon come to an end, so the tools will resume service with the oncoming spring. Tool maintenance is thus necessary if you are to be ready for the first rays of sunlight.
You should begin by cleaning. The goal is cleanliness, of course, but also and especially, this disinfects the tools and accessories and thereby prevents possible disease from spreading from one plant to another.
Maintenance varies from one tool to another.
For cutting tools like the secateurs, the branch cutter or the pruning knife, the best way to disinfect is by using 90° alcohol. Once cleaned, these tools should be sharpened.
Tools with axles and springs should also be greased to protect them from friction.
Check the handles of tools. Some may need to be replaced. Wooden handles should be treated with a light oil to make them last longer. Fixings at the head of a tool should be carefully checked and greased.
Certain precautions should be taken with tools which are motorized. The simplest thing to do to avoid problems is to read the manufacturers manual of lawnmowers, edge cutters, grinding tools, etc..
Generally, all heat engines require that the sparkplugs be removed. In some cases, an oil change and an emptying of the tank is recommended. The blades should be sharpened and the axles greased.
Apart from tools, garden accessories like stakes, pots and garden boxes, pickets, etc. also require maintenance. Again, everything must be thoroughly cleaned. Simply wash them with a mixture of water and bleach to prevent the spread of larvae and diseases.
Wooden pickets and stakes should be steeped in a mixture of water and bleach, and then treated with Bordeaux mixture after drying.