With many of us working on our gardens during the Covid-19 lockdown, we asked Southport Flower Show Gold-medalist Peter Lloyd, Director of Gardens by Peter Lloyd for some tips on staying safe whilst gardening.
Gardening can be a great way to enjoy the outdoors, improve physical and mental wellbeing, enhance the community and grow fruits and vegetables.
Whether you are a beginner or expert gardener, health and safety should always be a priority. Below are some tips to help keep you safe and healthy in the garden.
Protect yourself from garden pests, harmful chemicals, sharp or motorised equipment, insects, and too much sun.
Wear safety goggles, sturdy shoes, and long trousers to prevent injury when using power tools and equipment.
Protect your hearing using ear defenders when using machinery. If you have to raise your voice to talk to someone who is an arm’s length away, the noise can be potentially harmful to your hearing.
Wear gloves to lower the risk for cuts, contaminants and skin irritations.
Use insect repellent and wear long-sleeved shirts and trousers.
Lower your risk for sunburn and skin cancer. Wear breathable long sleeves, a hat, sunglasses and sun cream with sun protective factor 30 or higher.
Powered and unpowered tools and equipment can cause serious injury. Limit distractions, use chemicals and equipment properly and be aware of hazards to lower your risk for injury.
Follow instructions and warning labels on chemicals and garden equipment.
Make sure equipment is working properly.
Sharpen tools carefully.
Keep harmful chemicals, tools and equipment out of children’s and pet’s reach.
Know your limits in the heat.
Even being out for short periods of time in high temperatures can cause serious health problems. Monitor your activities and time in the sun to lower your risk for heat-related illness.
If you’re outside in hot weather for most of the day, make an effort to drink more fluids such as water. Avoid drinking liquids that contain alcohol or large amounts of sugar.
Take breaks often. Try to rest in shaded areas so that your body will have a chance to recover.
Stop working if you experience breathlessness or muscle soreness.
Pay attention to signs of heat-related illness, including high body temperature, headache, rapid pulse, dizziness, nausea or confusion.
Eat healthy foods to help keep you energised.
Enjoy the benefits of physical activity.
Gardening is an excellent way to get physical activity. Active people are less likely than inactive people to be obese or have high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, stroke and depression.
Be active for at least 2 hours a week. Include activities that raise your breathing and heart rates and that strengthen your muscles. Help children be active for at least 1 hour a day.
If you have been inactive, start out with just a few minutes of physical activity each day. Gradually build up time and intensity.
Vary your gardening activities to keep your interest and to broaden the range of benefits.
Gardens by Peter Lloyd offer a range of garden design and maintenance services. Peter's experience and expertise lies in soft landscaping design and planting. Peter specialises in designing sensory gardens and gardens for wellness.
Whether your property is residential or commercial, Peter wants all customers to have the peace of mind that they will never have to search for a garden maintenance contractor again, and this is done by making sure that he offers the best service and does the best job possible in-line with RHS best practice.
He is concerned with your complete satisfaction. You can count on Gardens by Peter Lloyd to do what is right and stand behind 100% of their work every time.
This article is a part of our Four Seasons of Health and Safety campaign.