Adaptive Gardening: Enjoying Your Garden for a Lifetime

Posted by Chris Sabbarese on Mon, Dec, 30, 2019 @ 14:12 PM

There's at least one thing all home and property owners have in common. None of us are getting any younger. In fact, a 1/3rd of gardeners we interviewed for a study, revealed they have some physical ailment that prevents them from doing gardening activities. Recently, I had the privilege of discussing how gardeners can still go about enjoying their garden at any age, in a GILN podcast interview with Toni Gattone, author of The Lifelong Gardener: Garden with Ease and Joy At Any Age. She explained how to approach working outdoors as you age, adapting the layout of your garden to suit your lifestyle, using tools that can help get the job done and provided some excellent tips and how-tos to enjoy your space as you age. If you ever get tired or sore from working outdoors, keep reading and get more by listening to this great episode.

Your Mind and Body

If life has taught me anything, it's that I cannot do the same things I did when I was younger. While I still enjoy working outdoors, it takes longer to recover in between. A sore back from bending. Removing tree branches. Weeding and raking up leaves. Pruning back roses. It all needs to be done but with each passing season, it gets a little harder to do. In her interview, Toni stressed it's important to recognize you can't do it all but having a great positive attitude goes a long way. Gardening itself help reduce stress and anxiety. It's also important to stay connected and engaging with others, in person. While social media has its benefits, it has actually made us feel more disconnected than ever before. To help stay socially active, she suggests joining a garden club, getting a plot at a community garden, or become a master gardener. And just as important and having a sounds mind, it's equally important to keep moving. Gardening activities help us bend and stretch our range of motion.

371171533Image courtesy of Toni Gattone

Warm it Up and Switch it Up

Like any physical activity, it's important to do some warm-up exercises before you get started. Everything from stretching to dancing to your favorite rock and roll music. This is a step I tend to forget before gardening. The idea of jamming to my favorite play list sounds like a great way to get the body moving. After warming up, Toni says it's important to switch it up and use different muscles. If you have raking to do, go for 20 minutes and switch to another gardening activity like pruning or weeding. The main thing is to avoid long periods of repetitive motion.


What is Adaptive Gardening

Adaptive gardening is a term that may sound a bit confusing but it's really the ability to garden and taking into account one's physical capabilities. In Toni's book, she references tools to help get the job done, even if a person has sore knees, a bad back, limited dexterity or all the above. The main point that she makes is that adaptive garden means you don't have to throw in the "trowel" and give up working in the garden and landscape. One key point she makes in the interview, is regardless of your age and physical limitations, even a new gardener can apply some of these same principles that help with gardening as they age. Planning ahead in your garden design so you can manage and enjoy it for a lifetime make good sense for new home buyers.


Adaptive Gardening Rules to Live By

Save time, save money, save energy and save space, with the most important being saving your energy. Anticipate the tools you will need and save trips back and forth to the tool shed. One thing I would add to that after years of speaking to gardeners, I often hear even experienced gardeners using the wrong tool in an effort to save a trip back to the shed. In reality, using the wrong tool can exert more energy trying to get the job done. Save time and money planting perennials and flowering shrubs rather than annuals that need to be replaced every year. Putting the right plant in the right spot can also save time and money. Toni also recommends getting help when you need it by inviting others over that can get the project done. A nice lunch and garden party, helps encourage family and friends to come over and help.

Coping with Adaptive Gardening

The first step in the process is accepting your physical limitations. This will help you reach a level where you can do the activities with easy and joy. That means finding easier ways to get things done. As Toni points out, done is better than perfect! Garden smarter and you'll save time so you can enjoy it more. This will also help to work quicker and more efficiently, with more comfort and safety. Combined it gives you more time to enjoy your garden and landscape instead of always working in it.

81MbDs42u0LImage courtesy of Toni Gattone

Traits of a Accessible Garden Design

Those flagstone paths with emerald moss growing between the stone is very aesthetically pleasing however they can also present tripping hazards for the mature unsteady gardener. She recommends replacing these kinds of paths with wide, even surfaces like interlocking pavers or concrete. Many gardeners grow in raised beds on top of the soil. She recommends raising the garden beds to be waist-high to prevent excessive bending. Another accessible option is growing vertically with a vertical planter. There are many options now that attach to a wall, and a growing tower or even containers that rest on an outdoor railing work well too.

322268107Image courtesy of Toni Gattone

Tools for Adaptive Gardening

If you are going to work out in the garden and landscape, having the right tools is essential. Toni shared that the most important thing to keep in mind is comfort. When buying a tool like a hand pruner, go to the store and try it out to see which one feels best. Safety is another important consideration. Replace older rusty tools that don't work or won't close properly. You can also be creative or invent something that works for you. I especially like Toni's PVC pipe seed planting tool. It eliminates bending to plant seeds and places them right where they need to go! This is a great idea for planting for gardeners of all ages.

Corona FlexDIal bypass hand pruner

Inspiration to Get Out There at Any Age

It was quite an experience learning about adaptive gardening from Toni. She has an infectious enthusiasm about her and that comes across not only in this podcast, but in her book as well. I received a copy ahead of the interview and the well thought-out concepts for enjoying your garden at any age is one of the best garden books I've read. It focuses on ways to enjoy your garden without the basics of how to garden. There are stories of other gardeners throughout the book that are inspirational. It's great to know, as we age, we're not alone! It's a fantastic read and you can find it at Amazon or check out the other links in the podcast notes.

gattone-book-coverImage courtesy of Toni Gattone

Hear the Interview on the Green Industry Leaders Network Podcast

Whether you are an advanced gardener and homeowner or just beginning your gardening journey, Toni Gattone shares some great insights from her latest book on this episode. It's a great discussion that can change how you look at your landscape design. You can listen to the our complete interview and helpful information, 24/7 on the Green Industry Leaders Network podcast.



Topics: gardening, Landscaping, garden tools, adaptive gardening

Importance of Using the Right Type of Hand Pruner

Posted by Chris Sabbarese on Tue, Apr, 30, 2019 @ 20:04 PM

One of the most interesting things we see quite often from gardeners and landscapers, is the confusion about which tool to use for the job. There seems to be a misconception, from beginners to advanced, that one tool is good enough for all jobs. This post sets the record straight when to use bypass pruners and when to anvil pruners. At the most basic level, bypass are ideal for pruning and cutting fresh, live green stems. This will make the cleanest cuts, allowing the plant to properly heal and promote new growth. For hard, dead wood, an anvil pruner cuts through this dense material easily, without risk to the plant or tree, and even your pruner. Read on to find out the why's for both and why not's of using these tool interchangeably. It will help protect your plants, your tools and yourself.

Corona bypass hand pruner blog post

Bypass Pruners - Cutting Live Stems and Branches

A bypass pruner has a cutting blade that passes a the non-cutting hook, much like a pair of scissors. The blade is sharped on one side with the flat, unsharpened on the side, passing the hook. When sharp and cutting live branches and stems, they make the cleanest cut on the plant, without any damage to the remaining stems. This is important as it helps the plant to heal from the cut, and encourages new growth. 

Corona FlexDIal bypass hand pruner

Anvil Pruners - Cutting Hard, Dead Wood

Unlike the bypass pruner, an anvil pruner has a blade that is sharped on both sides. This closes down on a flat anvil, which typically has a narrow channel for the cutting blade, as not to damage its sharpened edge. What makes this great for cutting hard, dead wood is, there is no risk of crushing any stems. In fact removing the old dead wood, help the plant direct energy towards new growth.

Corona Anvil hand pruner

The Why Not's for Using the Wrong Tools

This is where confusion and misconception happens is that many gardeners think, this one pruner will handle their all their small pruning jobs. However, using an anvil hand pruner on a live stem or branch, will likely crush it. In most cases, it will make the cut, the remaining branch gets crushed and damaged. The plant must recover from it and will be more susceptible to diseases and pests. This could ultimately kill the plant.

Using a bypass pruner on hard, dead wood can be plan disastrous. Since the wood is harder to cut, a gardener is likely to twist and torque their hand, causing the blade to cross over the hook. Not only will this kill your hand, once the cut is made, the blade will come down on the hook, rather than bypass it. This will cause the blade to become damaged or chipped. And the worst case, cause the blade to snap and potentially become a sharp projectile. Not only are you out a good hand pruner, since this is using the tool incorrectly and not covered under warranty, you could risk serious bodily injury to yourself

Do You REALLY Need Both?

It's best to assess what the job is and bring the correct tool for the task. You wouldn't use a screwdriver to drive in a nail. So if your if job is mostly cutting live stems and branches, a bypass pruner is your go to. If you are cutting out dead wood or even harder, denser plants and trees like mesquite, invest in a decent anvil pruner. Spending a little extra budget will ultimate save you from replacing your good bypass pruners down the road. Or replacing a plant that didn't survive due to a poor cut. Most importantly, a visit to the emergency room when a blade snaps and injures you.

Need more advice when it comes to pruning and proper tool care? Check out Corona's free Principles of Pruning guide packed with lots of helpful tips and information. 


Topics: gardening, Landscaping, garden tools, hand pruners

7 Tools of Corona Confidence - Razor Tooth Saw® - 7 inch Folding Saw

Posted by Chris Sabbarese on Wed, Dec, 16, 2015 @ 11:12 AM

Remove Medium to Larger Branches Fast

Corona_quickSaws0014.jpgRemove branches the easy way, with Corona's efficient Razor Tooth Saw®. First, the folding saw is ergonomically designed with a curved blade design that locks open, but folds into the handle for easy portability. Three-sided razor teeth for efficient cutting on the pull stroke are impulse-hardened for a long service life. The blade is curved for faster cutting, and is both taper ground with a replaceable blade when needed. It easily folds up for safe transport and can be used in the garden, on the trail or campsite. The only time you'll be lost is without it. 

Finish the sentence in the comments below for a chance to win the Razor Tooth Saw®

"The Razor Tooh Saw® makes me Corona Confident because _____________________________________. 

For more info and giveaway details see the 7 Tools of Corona Confidence


Topics: garden tools, landscape tools, Corona Confidence

7 Tools of Corona Confidence - Forged Dual Cut™ Bypass Lopper

Posted by Chris Sabbarese on Wed, Dec, 16, 2015 @ 11:12 AM

Power and Precision Cutting

GeriCoronaLoppers.jpgTackle limbs up to 2" in diameter with the Forged Dual Cut Bypass Lopper. It delivers 20% more cutting power and enhanced performance with large cuts due to its patented blade and hook design.

The fully forged steel construction provides strength and the comfortable handle with contoured soft grip fits various hand sizes, ending in no-fail metal end caps. The integrated bumper is efficiently shock-absorbing

Finish the sentence in the comments for a chance to win this great lopper:  

“Corona's Forged Dual Cut™ Bypass Lopper will make me feel Corona Confident because . . . " 


Topics: garden tools, landscape tools, Corona Confidence

7 Tools of Corona Confidence - Micro Snips

Posted by Chris Sabbarese on Wed, Dec, 16, 2015 @ 11:12 AM

Micro Cutting for Fine Greens and More

Hydroponic_Tools_SMALL-1.jpgMake precision cuts for mincing herbs, hydroponics, micro greens, flower prepping and other fine work.  It's easily accomplished with this trio of micro snips. All of these precision stainless steel cutting tools can be sterilized between cuts to limit cross contamination. 

First, the Finger Micro Snip FS 4110 are the smallest Snip, with sharp, 1 1/4-inch stainless steel blades and a pointy tip that allows for precision cutting.

Next, the versatile Micro Snip FS 4120 has a heavy-duty spring for reliable performance and a double-sided lock that's good for right or left hand use. Compact 2 5/16-inch stainless steel blades are double beveled with tapered tips for precision cuts.  

Finally, the Scissor FS 4130 have 2-inch stainless steel blades with double beveled tapered tips for precision cuts, and durable lightweight handles.

Finish the sentence in the comments for a chance to win these great micro snips:  

“Corona Micro Snips will make me feel Corona Confident because _________________” 

For more info and giveaway details see the 7 Tools of Corona Confidence

Topics: garden tools, landscape tools, Corona Confidence

7 Tools of Corona Confidence - Forged Aluminum Bypass Pruner

Posted by Chris Sabbarese on Wed, Dec, 16, 2015 @ 11:12 AM

One Size Does Not Fit All

Corona_Forged_Aluminum_Bypass_Pruner.jpgThe perfect fit is available now among this trio of Corona Forged Aluminum Bypass Pruners, whether you have a small hand, a large hand or are a Lefty! With a replaceble blade option, this is one bypass pruner that will last you for many seasons to come.

Forged Aluminum Bypass Pruners for SMALLER HANDS BP 6310

Forged Aluminum Bypass Pruners for LARGER HANDS BP 6360

Forged Alminum Bypass Pruners for LEFT HANDED USERS BP 6340  

To win a Corona Forged Aluminum Bypass Pruner, finish the sentence in the comments below; 

“The Forged Alminum Bypass Pruners specifically chosen for ME will make me feel Corona Confident because __________________.” 

For more info and giveaway details see the 7 Tools of Corona Confidence

Topics: garden tools, landscape tools, Corona Confidence

7 Tools of Corona Confidence - Corona Files

Posted by Chris Sabbarese on Wed, Dec, 16, 2015 @ 11:12 AM

9-Piece File Set With Handle 

fs0003cs_smFileSet9Pieces.jpgHere's the perfect opportunity to maintain your cutting edge on your pruning and digging tools. A sharpened blade makes garden tasks easier and helps minimize body fatigue by requiring less physical effort. The comort grip also makes it easy to control files while sharpening blades.

This complete 9-piece set of quality files handles every type of blade, nick or cut  and deburrs and finishes with ease. The set includes the following 9 files: 8" Mill bastard cut; 8" Mill smooth cut; 8" Round bastard cut; 8" Round smooth cut; 8" Half round bastard cut; 8" Half round smooth cut; 8" Taper slim; and 8' Taper extra slim, plus the handle and mounting inserts. 

Finish the sentence in the comments below for a chance to win.

"The 9-piece File Set gives me Corona Confidence because ____________" 

For more info and giveaway details see the 7 Tools of Corona Confidence


Topics: garden tools, landscape tools, Corona Confidence

7 Tools for Corona Confidence - Stainless Steel Long Straight Snips

Posted by Chris Sabbarese on Wed, Dec, 16, 2015 @ 11:12 AM

ag4930ss_LongStraightSnipStainlessSteel.jpgAn Essential for Every Gardener

Corona's Long Straight Snip with stainless steel blades is the versatile answer to so many holiday demands! Snip holly, ribbon, wire, cord, packaging, wrapping, decorations, cut flowers and more during the holiday season with the Long Straight Snip.

Don't be fooled, these easy-to-use snips are well built and go from holiday decor to the garden. Thoughout the year you will be reaching for them to snip off a fresh bunch of herbs, deadhead your shrubs and harvest fruit.  Keep one indoors and one out in the tools shed and you will always have them at your finger tips.  We're confident that no garden tool bag should be without them. 

Finish the sentence in the comments for a chance to win these great Snips:  

“Corona Long Straight Snips will make me feel Corona Confident because ___________" 

For more info and giveaway details see the 7 Tools of Corona Confidence

Topics: garden tools, landscape tools, Corona Confidence

7 Tools For Building Corona Confidence

Posted by Chris Sabbarese on Wed, Dec, 16, 2015 @ 11:12 AM

7 Days, 7 Tools and Many Seasons of Confidence

Corona_Confidence.jpgAs the holidays approach, gardeners and landscapers are preparing for the winter months ahead and dreaming about next year's season. They look forward to getting back out in the soil, trimming the hedges, planting new vegetable seeds and hoping they are on Santa's "nice list" for all kinds of new garden gadgets and gifts. 

In case you miss the "nice list" this year or prefer to not to tempt fate, we have a holiday garden giveaway just for you, 7 Tools For Corona Confidence. Every Corona tool is designed and engineered to make your tasks easier. With greater comfort and durability, we have the tools to give you the confidence to achieve your gardening goals!  

Be Confident and You Could Win

Tell us how you could be Corona Confident using each of the tools on the 7 Tools For Corona Confidence list below. Click on each tool to see how it builds confidence, then add your remarks and opinions to the Comments Section on each of the specific pages. This holiday giveaway runs through 12/22/15 and you will be entered to win one of the Corona Christmas Week Tools. Winners will be judged on their comments and their description of how the tool will help them build confidence in their garden and landscape. Tool prizes can only be shipped to continental US, HI, AK and Canada, sorry no PO Boxes.

7 Tools for Building Corona Confidence 

Stainless Steel Long Straight Snips The handy pair of snips you'll rely on for harvesting herbs, deadheading, and more. 

Forged Aluminum Bypass Pruners Choose a pruner for the perfect fit; whether for large or small hands or lefty!

BigLOAD Leaf Rake Rake up leaves twice as fast and have more time for fun.

9-Piece File Set Keep your cutting edge on your pruning and digging tools with Corona files. 

Micro Snip  The ideal trio of snips for cutting herbs, flowers, harvesting micro greens, craft projects and more. 

Forged Dual Cut™ Bypass Loppers  Easily remove branches with 20% more cutting power. 

7-inch Razor Tooth® Folding Saw  Medium to large branches are history with this saw.

NOTE: We welcome your comments on this page however to be eligible to win tools you must comment on each tool you would like to win by clicking the links above.

Share Your Favorite Corona Confidence Tool

For nearly 90 years Corona has been making tools that gardeners, landscape professionals, arborists, the aspiring hobbyist and everyone in between, have relied on and developed confidence to get the job done.  If you are a long time Corona user with your own favorite tool, share it with us in the comments below and how it's made you Corona Confident.  We'll select one to receive a $100 worth of Corona tools from our website.  Be sure to include the tool name/ number in the comments and good luck!

Topics: garden tools, landscape tools, Corona Confidence

Feeling #CoronaProud With My Corona Garden Tools

Posted by Chris Sabbarese on Fri, May, 08, 2015 @ 16:05 PM

CoronaProudThere's something incredible that happens after spending the day in the garden.  Whether its the feeling of a great workout, enjoying a digital detox and planting flowers, or feeling accomplished after taming the wall of vines.

When you think about it, there is one thing in common with all those great moments.  The garden tools you use to make it all happen.  That's right, gardeners know, tools are an important part of making what they do more enjoyable and satisfying.

A Crowning (Corona) Acheivement 

Among the many things I take pride in my garden are my roses.  I have collection of hybrid teas and I have the luxury of enjoying year round beauty in my backyard. Last Mother's Day, one of my wife's favorite rose, Marilyn Monroe (pictured right) was in full bloom.  I cut an impressive bouquet and gave them to her. Besides having such beautiful fresh flowers which bring her great joy, it made me proud to be able to grow them for her.

I Am #CoronaProud.  Are You?

It started me thinking that without the proper tools, I wouldn't have been able to plant those roses in the first place.  Or prune them to encourage new growth and blooms.  Or scoop and spread mulch to help retain moisture and prevent weeds.  I was proud of what I accomplished and appreciated my Corona's for helping me to do it.  Yes, I am #coronaproud of what I can accomplish with them.

How have Corona Tools helped you become #CoronaProud in the garden? What's your story how Corona tools have helped you be proud of what you've accomplished?  Did that Dual Cut Lopper empower you to prune back that tree?  Does your ComfortGEL Trowel help you to plant your favorite vegetable? Share your story with us on your favorite social networks and you could win a $100 shopping spree on CoronaToolsUSA

Share Your Story and Win

coronaproud2Throughout May, you can share your story with us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Vine, G+ or in comments below. Be sure to use #coronaproud hashtag in any post or posts. Hit us with pictures of what you planted with your Corona tools. Show us how much pruning you accomplished last weekend with your Forged Aluminum Bypass Pruners.  Tell us how your Mother's old Corona tools make you feel like she's there in your garden with you. What ever it is that makes you #CoronaProud, we want to hear from you.

Submit as many as you would like since you probably have more than one thing your are proud of.  As the winner, your story will be featured in the Season After Season monthly newsletter. Not to mention a $100 shopping spree on our website for new Corona tools.  Not getting Season After Season?  Sign up now!

Sign Up Now

See Your Story on #CoronaProud

Stories are more fun when you can share them with others.  We set up a #coronaproud Tagboard where you can see posts across all the social networks too.  See who else is #coronaproud and interact with others who share in your passion for what they can accomplish with great tools. What makes you #coronaproud?






Topics: Corona Tools, gardening, tools, #CoronaProud, garden tools, tool, Corona

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