I know it’s summer because I’ve finally started doing the morning weeding. Usually this would have started weeks ago, I’m super-behind, and the grasses in particular are getting almost as tall as me, but hey, better late than never. I have this vague goal to wake up even earlier, do yoga, and then go do weeding (or vice versa), but that may be over-ambitious; we’ll see.
Notes for weeding:
– I don’t use any poison because I eat all kinds of things out of my garden, so it’s been all natural/organic for over a decade now. This does make for more digging; such is life.
– wear gloves (I know it’s nice to feel the bare dirt sometimes, but when you’re reaching down into a mass, it’s too easy for some plant or animal to bite you — I’ve been careless before and gotten bee-stung, for example, or gotten nasty thorns)
– reach down to the base of the plant, and gently pull with a steady motion to get all of it up with the roots (watering first or weeding after rain can also help)
– bring your pruners, because there will probably be some that are too hard to yank out, and if you trim them at the root every year, at least some of them will die that way eventually
– don’t hesitate to use a kneeler if it’ll help; I usually just end up sitting cross-legged on the ground, but whatever is going to make you more comfortable is good.
– stay hydrated; if you get into it, it’s easy to lose track of time and you’re crouching down on your haunches and you might get really dizzy when you stand up; hydration helps
– listening to something can really make it go faster — I sometimes do music, but often these days listen to gardening podcasts, so I can pretend I’m learning something while I’m working — “Let’s Argue About Plants” is a fun one, from the editors at Fine Gardening
– have some mulch on hand — if you have the energy when you’ve stopped weeding for the day, you can spread mulch right away, helping to stop more weeds from starting. If you don’t have the energy at the end of weeding, start with the mulching the next day.
– most importantly — stay out of the sun in the heat of summer if at all possible. At least for me, I run out of energy for weeding MUCH faster if I’m trying to weed in the sun, so I tend to follow the shade around the garden for weeding. This may mean getting up a little earlier to weed some bits, I’m sorry! A wide-brimmed hat also helps, and then you will really look the part.
– for locals, if you’re going to have a lot of weeding, you may want to invest in the Village compost program; I find it’s much easier to dump these in the big gray bin that to put them yard waste bags, find the stickers you’ve bought, etc.