I pulled my hamstring this past weekend. Actually, I strained my hamstring last week andÂ choose to ignore it because only sissies let a little thing like pain stop them . Besides, damn it, I had 3 trees that needed to go into the ground this weekend (it is already a little late to be planting trees) so the little ache in the back of my thigh was not going to stop me.
THEN I pulled my hamstring, hard, and entered a whole new level of pain. What was a little ache turned into a full fledged hurting akin to stabbing a knife, albeit a modestly sized knife but a knife nonetheless, into the back of my leg – again and again and again. Every. Time. I. Bend. My. Leg. It’s like there is a sprite size sadist back there.
Basically, this means that my leg needs to stay tightly secured in a brace for a week or two and none of that kneeling, bending, weight bearing stuff that gardening normally requires. My husband has taken to calling me Hop Along Hanna. *sigh*
But I am fiending hard for a dirt fix, so what is a girl to do.?
I can’t be the only person in the world who has a medical issue that could keep them from gardening. There are many ailments that can make the chores of everyday gardening rather difficult, and some of them *gulp* are permanent conditions. Â Yet, these allegedly disabled people can be Â enabled gardeners, so there has to be a way, right?
While I can’t get down and dirty as usual in the garden, there are a few things I can do in the meantime to still play in the dirt without causing me undue pain and suffering.
- Get your garden on Â at waist level — My sweet spousal unit placed my potting soil on the picnic table along with my plants and pots. I have been making containers galore. With everything at waist level, I can either sit or stand (flamingo style) as I see fit. Waist level dirt does not have to stop at simply filling containers. We are lucky that at our house, we have a great many retaining walls that the containers can be placed on, making them super easy to water and care for. If I didn’t have these retaining walls, numerous plant stands and pedestals would make great stand ins.
If I needed a permanent solution (like my husband’s grandfather did a few years ago when his knees really went), you can convert your entire garden to waist high management. His super raised beds are built out of cinder block, but wood framed raised beds would work as well.
- Wave your magic water wand — For $6-35, you can become the proud owner of a water wand with varying degrees of neat features like spray type and water flow control — depending on how much you pay. Water wands make it easy to get down low or get up high to water without having to stretch or kneel.Really, these are awesome gadgets to have regardless of your current physical state.
- Kick the bucket — A five gallon bucket makes a great portable seat that you can move with you in the garden so that you are sitting instead of kneeling. If you want to get fancy, they sell little trolleys and rolling stools that are essentially the same thing. Heck, you want to hit the middle ground, they sell aprons for 5 gallon buckets so you can use it to tote your garden tools as well.
- Long arm of the trowel — Many garden tools already come with long handles, which means less bending and kneeling. Even tools you think can only be found in the hand version, can be found with long handles if you look around on the internet.
No one, whether through temporary or permanent condition, needs to stop gardening. Many of our plants would shrivel and die without their gardeners and many gardeners would shrivel and die without their plants. Well, I have to run hop along now, so I can get back to my own garden.