Jun 13, 2013

storing garden tools...

with all the outdoor work we fish has been doing, we've amassed a modest little collection of spades, trowels, shovels, etc -- and we really needed a better way to store them than this:

actually, this is better than where they usually are: scattered haphazardly around our garage and yard. we ended up with four trowels because we kept losing the them in the clutter. that is why it pays to be organized.

for this storage idea, i combined a couple of ideas from real simple and bhg

i had an old large terra cotta pot that would be perfect to hold our tools:

it had a drainage hole at the bottom, which i simply covered with a cut-out circle from a grocery bag.

next, i filled it about three-quarters full with sand:

then, i borrowed some boiled linseed oil from my oil-painting supplies. its purpose is to prevent rust on the metal blades of your tools. you can also use it to recondition wooden handles, if you have them. 
linseed oil is derived from flax seeds. it's a much greener option than motor oil, which apparently has been a popular method to prevent rust in the past.

i originally found my boiled linseed oil in the painting supply section of home depot, by the mineral spirits and whatnot.

i poured about half a quart into my large pot of sand.
i let it soak in, then used a clean trowel to mix it up.

after wiping down the blades of each tool...i stuck 'em in!
for day-to-day use, make sure you wipe the blades clean of dirt and debris before plunging them back in the giant pot o' sand.

so, wait...where's the fail??

about ten minutes after i finished my little project, fish and i moved the pot into the garage and i guess we sat it down a little too hard...



* mari

Land Of Nod: Design for Kids and People That Used to be Kids


  1. Admittedly, this storage technique is kind of new to me, Mari. What a shame! It's very resourceful. And based on the materials you used, it might be truly effective -- the oil being the most important. When working with metals – tools and furniture – you should never miss oil or lubricating as part of the upkeep. The only thing that bothers me is you never get to use your hand tools completely clean in this method. Although this shouldn't actually be a problem (unless you have the OCD ;P) since you'd be dealing with soil and a lot of digging, anyway.

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