11 Time-Saving Tips

Time-saving ideas from OG's own test gardeners.

Photography by Christa Neu


save time with these garden tips8. Build soil in place.
No need to tote wheel-barrows full of compost to your garden. "I make compost right in the walkways of my beds," Lisa says. "I layer newspaper with straw on top to prevent muddy shoes, and toward the end of the growing season, the straw and newspaper become a dark, crumbly compost. I add it right to the beds on each side of the walkway."

9. Wash the harvest.
Collect your produce in an old laundry basket. The basket acts as a strainer, allowing you to quickly rinse off dirt and debris from veggies and fruits.

10. Keep your shoes on.
Stash plastic grocery bags by the door to cover your muddy shoes in case you have to go inside before you are through gardening for the day.

11. Take baby steps.
Every minute is valuable when you're pressed for time. Take a few moments when you have them so chores don't pile up for the weekend. For instance, pluck a few weeds while waiting for the dog to finish his business outside or deadhead flowers while you're waiting for the school bus to drop off the kids.