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October 30, 2006

When it comes to putting all our gardening equipment away for the winter, only about 25 percent of us do it properly and that is probably a very generous estimate. To be honest, I’m one of the 75 percent who don’t effectively winterize all the equipment that makes gardening so much easier.

First in order is a thorough cleaning of all lawn mowers. grass contains acids that corrode, so it is important to carefully scrape off the underside of your mower. Spraying the underside with a household spray like ‘Pam’ is a great way to protect the metal overwinter. There are also oil sprays that can be applied to prevent rusting.

Next, the mower’s blades should be taken off, sharpened and balanced. If you know what you are doing, you can do it yourself, but for most folks, it’s probably better to have the job done by a professional.

Changing the mower’s oil in fall is very important. Dirty oils also contain acids that can cause internal corrosion. A special mist oil should be sprayed on the carburetor and valve rings while the mower is running to prevent rust in those areas as well. It is also a great idea to drain the gas out of the tank and once that is done, the mower is ready to be stored away in a dry location for winter.

Rototillers and other gardening equipment should be treated the same way. In addition to this care, all that is required for most ride-on mowers is the removal of the battery, which, by the way, should be charged every two months. The many types of weed and brush cutters should be cleaned up thoroughly too.

Electric and manual shears and clippers should be cleaned and then sharpened. It only makes sense to do it now while the equipment dealers are not quite as frantic as they are in the spring. There are also rust preventative sprays that should be applied now to keep them in good shape. I think the same is true for all our trowels and long handled shovels and forks.

I’m afraid many of us take our tools and other garden equipment too much for granted. Quality garden tools cost money, and it only makes sense to look after them. With a little care at the end of the season, we’ll not only save money but also eliminate a great deal of frustration with machines that won’t start or don’t run well. Part of proper maintenance is having all of our tools in good shape to do the job well, so take the time to winterize your equipment and tools now. Next spring, when your mower purrs on the first start, you’ll be glad you did.

Article courtesy of:
Minter Gardens Minter Gardens

Exit #135 Highway #1, Chilliwack, BC, Canada   V2P 6H7

Phone: (604) 794-7191   Fax: (604) 792-8893

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32 Acre World Class Show Garden & Event Facility

DateArticle TitleSource
Jul 2013  Ornamental Grasses  Minter Gardens 
Oct 2012  Winterizing your Garden  Minter Gardens 
Aug 2012  Moisture Stress  Minter Gardens 
Sep 2011  Little Bulbs  Minter Gardens 
Aug 2011  Stunning summer blooming heathers  Minter Gardens 
Feb 2011  Pruning Evergreens  Minter Gardens 
Nov 2010  Top 10 winter garden opportunities  Minter Gardens 
Oct 2010  Winter Containers  Minter Gardens 
Sep 2010  Ornamental Grasses More popular  Minter Gardens 
Jul 2010  Protect plants and grass from the sun  Minter Gardens 
Mar 2010  Keeping your lawn in prime condition  Minter Gardens 
Jan 2010  Sustainability good for Mother Earth  Minter Gardens 
Aug 2009  Sedums the true champions of late summer  Minter Gardens 
Apr 2009  Euphorbias  Minter Gardens 
Nov 2008  Add colour to lift winter spirits  Minter Gardens 
Sep 2008  Spring Bulbs, companion planting  Minter Gardens 
Aug 2008  Highlighting see through plants  Minter Gardens 
Jul 2008  Sedums late summer champions  Minter Gardens 
Oct 2006  Garden Equipment Maintenance  Minter Gardens 
Feb 2006  Moss  Minter Gardens 
Aug 2005  Unusual Bulbs  Minter Gardens 
Feb 2004  Pruning Conifers, Broadleaved Evergreens and Flowering Shrubs  Minter Gardens 
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