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It may seem to the reader that it is all very well to make a garden
with a pencil, but that the work of transferring it to the soil must be
quite another problem and one entailing so much work that he will leave
it to the professional market gardener. He possibly pictures to himself
some bent-kneed and stoop-shouldered man with the hoe, and decides that
after all there is too much work in the garden game. What a revelation
would be in store for him if he could witness one day's operations in a
modern market garden! Very likely indeed not a hoe would be seen during
the entire visit. Modern implements, within less than a generation,
have revolutionized gardening.

This is true of the small garden as certainly as of the large one: in
fact, in proportion I am not sure but that it is more so--because of
the second wonderful thing about modern garden tools, that is, the low
prices at which they can be bought, considering the enormous percentage
of labor saved in accomplishing results. There is nothing in the way of
expense to prevent even the most modest gardener acquiring, during a
few years, by the judicious expenditure of but a few dollars annually,
a very complete outfit of tools that will handsomely repay their cost.

While some garden tools have been improved and developed out of all
resemblance to their original forms, others have changed little in
generations, and in probability will remain ever with us. There is a
thing or two to say about even the simplest of them, however,--
especially to anyone not familiar with their uses.

There are tools for use in every phase of horticultural operations; for
preparing the ground, for planting the seed, for cultivation, for
protecting crops from insects and disease, and for harvesting.

First of all comes the ancient and honorable spade, which, for small
garden plots, borders, beds, etc., must still be relied upon for the
initial operation in gardening--breaking up the soil. There are several
types, but any will answer the purpose. In buying a spade look out for
two things: see that it is well strapped up the handle in front and
back, and that it hangs well. In spading up ground, especially soil
that is turfy or hard, the work may be made easier by taking a strip
not quite twice as wide as the spade, and making diagonal cuts so that
one vertical edge of the spade at each thrust cuts clean out to where
the soil has already been dug. The wide-tined spading-fork is
frequently used instead of the spade, as it is lighter and can be more
advantageously used to break up lumps and level off surfaces. In most
soils it will do this work as well, if not better, than the spade and
has the further good quality of being serviceable as a fork too, thus
combining two tools in one. It should be more generally known and used.
With the ordinary fork, used for handling manure and gathering up
trash, weeds, etc., every gardener is familiar. The type with oval,
slightly up-curved tines, five or six in number, and a D handle, is the
most convenient and comfortable for garden use.

For areas large enough for a horse to turn around in, use a plow. There
are many good makes. The swivel type has the advantage of turning all
the furrows one way, and is the best for small plots and sloping
ground. It should turn a clean, deep furrow. In deep soil that has long
been cultivated, plowing should, with few exceptions, be down at least
to the subsoil; and if the soil is shallow it will be advisable to turn
up a little of the subsoil, at each plowing--not more than an inch--in
order that the soil may gradually be deepened. In plowing sod it will
be well to have the plow fitted with a coulter, which turns a miniature
furrow ahead of the plowshare, thus covering under all sods and grass
and getting them out of the way of harrows and other tools to be used
later. In plowing under tall-growing green manures, like rye, a heavy
chain is hung from the evener to the handle, thus pulling the crop down
into the furrow so that it will all be covered under. Where drainage is
poor it will be well to break up the subsoil with a subsoil plow, which
follows in the wake of the regular plow but does not lift the subsoil
to the surface.


The spade or spading-fork will be followed by the hoe, or hook, and the
iron rake; and the plow by one or more of the various types of harrow.
The best type of hoe for use after the spade is the wide, deep-bladed
type. In most soils, however, this work may be done more expeditiously
with the hook or prong-hoe (see illustration). With this the soil can
be thoroughly pulverized to a depth of several inches. In using either,
be careful not to pull up manure or trash turned under by the spade, as
all such material if left covered will quickly rot away in the soil and
furnish the best sort of plant food. I should think that our energetic
manufactures would make a prong-hoe with heavy wide blades, like those
of the spading-fork, but I have never seen such an implement, either in
use or advertised.

What the prong-hoe is to the spade, the harrow is to the plow. For
general purposes the Acme is an excellent harrow. It is adjustable, and
for ground at all mellow will be the only one necessary; set it, for
the first time over, to cut in deep; and then, set for leveling, it
will leave the soil in such excellent condition that a light hand-
raking (or, for large areas, the Meeker smoothing-harrow) will prepare
it for the finest of seeds, such as onions and carrots. The teeth of
the Acme are so designed that they practically constitute a gang of
miniature plows. Of disc harrows there are a great many makes. The
salient feature of the disc type is that they can tear up no manure,
grass or trash, even when these are but partly turned under by the
plow. For this reason it is especially useful on sod or other rough
ground. The most convenient harrow for putting on the finishing
touches, for leveling off and fining the surface of the soil, is the
lever spike-tooth. It is adjustable and can be used as a spike-tooth or
as a smoothing harrow.

Any of the harrows mentioned above (except the Meeker) and likewise the
prong-hoe, will have to be followed by the iron rake when preparing the
ground for small-seeded garden vegetables. Get the sort with what is
termed the "bow" head (see illustration) instead of one in which the
head is fastened directly to the end of the handle. It is less likely
to get broken, and easier to use. There is quite a knack in
manipulating even a garden rake, which will come only with practice. Do
not rake as though you were gathering up leaves or grass. The secret in
using the garden rake is _not_ to gather things up. Small stones,
lumps of earth and such things, you of course wish to remove. Keep
these raked off ahead of where you are leveling the soil, which is
accomplished with a backward-and-forward movement of the rake.

The tool-house of every garden of any size should contain a seed-drill.
Labor which is otherwise tedious and difficult is by it rendered mere
play--as well as being better done. The operations of marking the row,
opening the furrow, dropping the seed at the proper depth and distance,
covering immediately with fresh earth, and firming the soil, are all
done at one fell swoop and as fast as you can walk. It will even drop
seeds in hills. But that is not all: it may be had as part of a
combination machine, which, after your seeds are planted--with each row
neatly rolled on top, and plainly visible--may be at once transformed
into a wheel hoe that will save you as much time in caring for your
plants as the seed-drill did in planting your seed. Hoeing drudgery
becomes a thing of the past. The illustration herewith shows such a
machine, and some of the varied attachments which may be had for it.
There are so many, and so varied in usefulness, that it would require
an entire chapter to detail their special advantages and methods of
use. The catalogues describing them will give you many valuable
suggestions; and other ways of utilizing them will discover themselves
to you in your work.

Valuable as the wheel hoe is, however, and varied in its scope of work,
the time-tried hoe cannot be entirely dispensed with. An accompanying
photograph [ED. Not shown here] shows four distinct types, all of which
will pay for themselves in a garden of moderate size. The one on the
right is the one most generally seen; next to it is a modified form
which personally I prefer for all light work, such as loosening soil
and cutting out weeds. It is lighter and smaller, quicker and easier to
handle. Next to this is the Warren, or heart-shaped hoe, especially
valuable in opening and covering drills for seed, such as beans, peas
or corn. The scuffle-hoe, or scarifier, which completes the four, is
used between narrow rows for shallow work, such as cutting off small
weeds and breaking up the crust. It has been rendered less frequently
needed by the advent of the wheel hoe, but when crops are too large to
admit of the use of the latter, the scuffle-hoe is still an
indispensable time-saver.

There remains one task connected with gardening that is a bug-bear.
That is hand-weeding. To get down on one's hands and knees, in the
blistering hot dusty soil, with the perspiration trickling down into
one's eyes, and pick small weedlets from among tender plantlets, is not
a pleasant occupation. There are, however, several sorts of small
weeders which lessen the work considerably. One or another of the
common types will seem preferable, according to different conditions of
soil and methods of work. Personally, I prefer the Lang's for most
uses. The angle blade makes it possible to cut very near to small
plants and between close-growing plants, while the strap over the back
of a finger or thumb leaves the fingers free for weeding without
dropping the instrument.

There are two things to be kept in mind about hand-weeding which will
reduce this work to the minimum. First, never let the weeds get a
start; for even if they do not increase in number, if they once smother
the ground or crop, you will wish you had never heard of a garden.
Second, do your hand-weeding while the surface soil is soft, when the
weeds come out easily. A hard-crusted soil will double and treble the
amount of labor required.

It would seem that it should be needless, when garden tools are such
savers of labor, to suggest that they should be carefully kept, always
bright and clean and sharp, and in repair. But such advice is needed,
to judge by most of the tools one sees.

Always have a piece of cloth or old bag on hand where the garden tools
are kept, and never put them away soiled and wet. Keep the cutting
edges sharp. There is as much pleasure in trying to run a dull
lawnmower as in working with a rusty, battered hoe. Have an extra
handle in stock in case of accident; they are not expensive. In
selecting hand tools, always pick out those with handles in which the
grain does not run out at the point where there will be much strain in
using the tool. In rakes, hoes, etc., get the types with ferrule and
shank one continuous piece, so as not to be annoyed with loose heads.

Spend a few cents to send for some implement catalogues. They will well
repay careful perusal, even if you do not order this year. In these
days of intensive advertising, the commercial catalogue often contains
matter of great worth, in the gathering and presentation of which no
expense has been spared.


The devices and implements used for fighting plant enemies are of two
sorts:--(1) those used to afford mechanical protection to the plants;
(2) those used to apply insecticides and fungicides. Of the first the
most useful is the covered frame. It consists usually of a wooden box,
some eighteen inches to two feet square and about eight high, covered
with glass, protecting cloth, mosquito netting or mosquito wire. The
first two coverings have, of course, the additional advantage of
retaining heat and protecting from cold, making it possible by their
use to plant earlier than is otherwise safe. They are used extensively
in getting an extra early and safe start with cucumbers, melons and the
other vine vegetables.

Simpler devices for protecting newly-set plants, such as tomatoes or
cabbage, from the cut-worm, are stiff, tin, cardboard or tar paper
collars, which are made several inches high and large enough to be put
around the stem and penetrate an inch or so into the soil.

For applying poison powders, such as dry Paris green, hellebore and
tobacco dust, the home gardener should supply himself with a powder
gun. If one must be restricted to a single implement, however, it will
be best to get one of the hand-power, compressed-air sprayers--either a
knapsack pump or a compressed-air sprayer--types of which are
illustrated. These are used for applying wet sprays, and should be
supplied with one of the several forms of mist-making nozzles, the non-
cloggable automatic type being the best. For more extensive work a
barrel pump, mounted on wheels, will be desirable, but one of the above
will do a great deal of work in little time. Extension rods for use in
spraying trees and vines may be obtained for either. For operations on
a very small scale a good hand-syringe may be used, but as a general
thing it will be best to invest a few dollars more and get a small tank
sprayer, as this throws a continuous stream or spray and holds a much
larger amount of the spraying solution. Whatever type is procured, get
a brass machine--it will out-wear three or four of those made of
cheaper metal, which succumbs very quickly to the, corroding action of
the strong poisons and chemicals used in them.

Of implements for harvesting, beside the spade, prong-hoe and spading-
fork already mentioned, very few are used in the small garden, as most
of them need not only long rows to be economically used, but horse-
power also. The onion harvester attachment for the double wheel hoe,
costing $1.00, may be used with advantage in loosening onions, beets,
turnips, etc., from the soil or for cutting spinach. Running the hand-
plow close on either side of carrots, parsnips and other deep-growing
vegetables will aid materially in getting them out. For fruit picking,
with tall trees, the wire-fingered fruit-picker, secured to the end of
a long handle, will be of great assistance, but with the modern method
of using low-headed trees it will not be needed.

Another class of garden implements are those used in pruning--but where
this is attended to properly from the start, a good sharp jack-knife
and a pair of pruning shears (the English makes are the best, as they
are in some things, when we are frank enough to confess the truth) will
easily handle all the work of the kind necessary.

Still another sort of garden device is that used for supporting the
plants; such as stakes, trellises, wires, etc. Altogether too little
attention usually is given these, as with proper care in storing over
winter they will not only last for years, but add greatly to the
convenience of cultivation and to the neat appearance of the garden.
Various contrivances are illustrated in the seed catalogues, and many
may be home-made--such as a stake-trellis for supporting beans.

As a final word to the intending purchaser of garden tools, I would
say: first thoroughly investigate the different sorts available, and
when buying, do not forget that a good tool or a well-made machine will
be giving you satisfactory use long, long after the price is forgotten,
while a poor one is a constant source of discomfort. Get good tools,
and _take_ good care of them. And let me repeat that a few dollars
a year, judiciously spent, for tools afterward well cared for, will
soon give you a very complete set, and add to your garden profit and



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