Prepping Your Yard Tools For Winter Off-Season

Rachio & Denver Urban Gardens | CaretGo Back
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Special thanks to: Judy Elliott, Senior Education Specialist, and Creighton Hofeditz, Director of Permaculture & Perennials at Denver Urban Gardens

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Winter Tool Care

If you live in a climate that experiences colder temperatures over the winter, you might be overjoyed to tuck your lawn mower away for a season of rest. But how can you make sure your top yard care tools are kept in good working condition while they await spring? Rachio and Denver Urban Gardens suggest the following steps for preserving lawn and garden essentials.

Shovels, Pruners, & Other Hand Tools

Regular tool maintenance and cleaning is key for longevity. To keep your tools in shape through the winter, follow these steps:

  • Clean and scrape off any caked-on soil.
  • Sharpen the edges with a garden file.
  • Use rough sandpaper or steel wool to remove rust.
  • Apply linseed oil to any wooden handles.
  • Disinfect all metal with isopropyl alcohol or chlorine bleach (or oxygen-based substitute) to get rid of any remnants of disease or unwanted pests.

Lawn Mowers

If you have a gas-powered lawn mower, follow these steps to keep it ready for spring.

  • Make sure the fuel tank is empty before stashing it in a shed or garage for the winter. Leftover fuel can cause clogs, corrosion, and other problems you will not want to deal with in the springtime.
  • Use a stiff brush to scrape the mower deck and remove any grass clippings using a dull knife.
  • It’s a good idea to drain and replace the oil, as well as replace air filters (this should be done every three months or so).

Seeds & Flower Bulbs

  • If you’re saving seeds and flower bulbs for next season, make sure they are stored in a cool, dry place until they’re ready for planting. Some seeds can be frost sensitive, so do not allow them to freeze.

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