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Spring Gardening: Let Safety Flower with Your Plants

It's the time of the year when every gardener rejoices — spring planting has arrived! And whether you are cleaning up after winter or putting those first seeds in the ground for summer vegetables, be certain that safety is included in your planting and planning. To get you started, here are a few tips from gardening experts:

  • Sunscreen when the sun shines! Enjoy the glorious warmth of sunshine on your skin, but don't forget danger lurks within those powerful rays. Remember to regularly use (and refresh, when spending elongated gardening times) effective sunscreens and proper clothing. Let your plants soak up the sun, not your skin cells.
  • Use proper protective gear. When performing certain tasks, and especially when using tools and equipment, be sure to wear the proper gear: gloves, hats, eye protection and even masks may mean the difference between a joyful experience and a trip to the hospital.
  • Inspect tools before use. Broken or loose handles and dull or broken blades can turn a helpful garden tool into a dangerous threat. After their long winter in storage, be certain your tools are well maintained, clean and repaired before you use them. If motors are involved, be certain all moving parts are properly maintained, lubricated, sharpened or otherwise serviced. Finally, be certain pets and children are kept at a safe distance when you're using garden tools.
  • Warm up those "weekend warrior" muscles. If you have spent a relatively sedentary winter, don't assume you can move full-tilt into springtime activities. Learn from athletes and properly warm up, stretch or simply start with simpler tasks until your muscles are revitalized and reenergized for harder exertions.

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