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Row Covers, Trail Cameras, Squirrel Repellent and Tools

If you like geeking out on garden gadgets, then you might enjoy perusing some of our favorites. These are items we use regularly… including one plant we’re actually using as a tool and more!

Motion Activated Trail Camera

We use trail cam with infrared night vision to get shots of wildlife. If you have predators preying on your plants and other measures haven’t worked, to capture the marauders on camera could help you better identify the culprits and determine the next best plan of action.

We’re using two different trail cams and are satisfied with both. The camera on the left is the Stealth Cam G42 No-Glo Trail Game Camera, and the one on the right is the Covert Scouting MP6 Camera








Laser Thermometer Temperature Gun

The temperature gun we’re using and really enjoying for keeping a close eye on the temps of our beds, is this Etekcity Digital Laser Infrared Thermometer. This works in the garden 1) The tomato seedlings do best in beds not below 55 degrees, so this helps us get a quick shot on the bed to determine if they need a cover.2)

Temperature of soil in raised bed.
Temperature of soil in raised bed.


Garden Planner Pro App

Another favorite app which we’re giving a good workout this year is the Garden Planner Pro. It’s easy to learn, fun to use and makes planning and tweaking your garden plans, planting times, companion plants, etc., super easy!

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Motion Activated Sprinkler Squirrel Repellent

This worked for us! We tried the Hoontz Water Jet Blaster Animal Repeller. It took 15-20 minutes to set up, which just entailed running the hose and mounting it on a post. This works very well at keeping away dogs, cats, squirrels and deer. An added bonus with this garden pest deterrent is that it has the added benefit of spraying the plants a little each time it’s activated. We had a couple sections where the squirrels found a dry pathway to our tomatoes last summer, so this year we’re adding another motion activated sprinkler to close that gap.

These next few are our ever-present favorite tools.

Garden Hand Tools

No Blister Trowel – with it’s smooth handle and ergonomic design, it truly is a better, no-blister trowel.

No Blister Trowel on Amazon


Felco #2 Pruners – quality, strong, great grip and cut, and replaceable parts.

The Leatherman Micra – The mini multitool has a great pair of scissors, a sharp cutting blade and several other handy features. The scissors are great for thinning seedlings, cutting twine, and seed packets. And it all folds neatly and unobtrusively in the pants pocket.

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Row Covers to Protect Plants from Frost

Oh! Also, Easy Tunnel Fleece Row Covers – we’re really like the simplicity, flexibility and effectiveness of these Easy Tunnels, and can definitely recommend them.

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AND… this last one… we had to add in. Check out the next page to see which plant we use as a tool and more!

Black Bamboo – The Plant that’s also a Tool

Years ago we planted bamboo, and now we have a small grove. It hasn’t overtaken us, even though we’ve heard it can, and it was planted over 20 years ago. But we use it for all kinds of things. First, it serves as a living “fence” to keep some of our gardening and construction “eyesores” shielded from the road view.

To keep bamboo from spreading, you can plant “clumping bamboo”.

The other way to keep bamboo from spreading is to order the plants or seed of clumping bamboo, a non-spreading variety.

In the garden, we’ve used them for stakes, bean pole teepees, light fencing, such as a pet barrier, fabric tent supports, trellis, and even a planting tool, (a straight section pressed into the soil makes a perfect channel to receive seeds and the end of the pole can make right sized holes to drop in seeds).

Purple Bamboo on Amazon
So, if you want to try it but are concerned about it spreading, but you could always plant in underground grow bags for extra protection. For while we’ve not had problems, bamboo certainly has that reputation.

We planted a blend of bamboo, some lighter and some black bamboo. You can probably find better prices at your local nursery for established plants such as this 2-3′ tall black bamboo from Amazon. Of course seeds are much cheaper too, but you have to wait a lot longer before you can start using it.

If you’re interested in more information on deer and other garden pest repellents, you may also enjoy these articles:
Best Deer Repellent to Keep Deer Out of the Garden
Natural Pest Control for Garden Pests
Earwigs in the Garden and How to Get Rid of Pincher Bugs

Okay! That’s a wrap folks! Please join in the conversation on our Facebook page and tell us your favorite gardening tools or equipment… tips and hacks.

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