SUN ONLINE, MAY 8, 2018
COVERAGE FOR FISKARS
GARDEN TOOLS: We reveal the biggest mistakes Brits are making with their gardens — from over-watering plants to letting kids and pets ruin grass
- Despite our mistakes, 57 per cent of Brits rate their gardening skills as good, compared to 23 per cent who say they lack knowledge when it comes to looking after their outdoor space
As MILLIONS of Brits get their gardens “summer ready” new research has revealed how clueless we are when it comes to our outdoor spaces.
Researchers found that killing grass with paddling pools and trampolines, cutting through cable on lawn mowers and killing plants by over-watering them, are among the common gardening faux pas Brits are set to fall victim of this month.
In fact, the poll found nearly one in twenty (4 per cent) of gardeners have managed to kill off fish in their pond, while nearly one in ten have blown off the petals from their flowers from excessive power washing.
A quarter of the 1,500 homeowners surveyed by Fiskars said their dog had completely ruined their grass and shrubs by peeing all over them.
Our children running riot in the garden (11 per cent), a lack of knowledge (18 per cent) and not having the right equipment (17 per cent) emerged as the reasons we don’t have pristine gardens – with 18 per cent saying they wish they had brand new garden tools to help them get their outdoor spaces in shape.
The research revealed the average Brit will spend £447 this year on their outdoor space, however 15 per cent have rusty and unloved garden tools propped up against the garden fence, while 7 per cent of us have an old lawn mower slowly rusting in a forgotten corner of the garden.
Other common mishaps include, ripping up flowers thinking they are weeds (23 per cent) and planting out of season (22 per cent).
Despite the disasters, 57 per cent of Brits rate their gardening skills as good, compared to 23 per cent who say they lack knowledge when it comes to looking after their outdoor space.
Almost one in ten of us (8 per cent) have stood on an upturned rake, while the same number have accidentally sprayed weedkiller on the lawn.
Not surprisingly then, more than one in five (21 per cent) said they don’t know what they’re doing when it comes to tending to their garden, while 9 per cent said they simply don’t know the difference between flowers and weeds.
The poll found over one in five of us have dead pot plants scattered around the garden, while 22 per cent said their patio is covered in unsightly weeds.
19 per cent confessed to having a sad looking BBQ which has been left out uncovered all winter.
Botanist and broadcaster, James Wong, comments: “Some of the gardening mishaps that Brits have encountered can happen to the most experienced of horticulturists.
“Cutting through the cable on a mower or hedge trimmer is easily done and it’s amazing to see how quickly grass can deteriorate when covered with a paddling pool or trampoline.
“With the weather improving, millions of Brits will be tackling their gardens and it’s important to have the right equipment for the job and to not be put off by a few failures.
“I have gardening disasters all the time and the wonderful thing about gardening is that there are no real ‘mistakes’, only ‘experiments’.
“Some of my proudest gardening moments have come out of the most spectacular failures – you just have to pick yourself up and start again.
“Want to know the secret to having a green thumb? Persistence. And, of course, having great garden tools to help you tackle the job at hand.”
Of those polled, over a third (36 per cent) of us would describe our gardens as dull but functional, while 15 per cent say their garden is a real mess, without any character.
Just over one in twenty of green fingered Brits (6 per cent)describe their garden as pristine and their pride and joy.
A spokesperson from Fiskars, the UK’s leading gardening tool expert, said: “When it comes to gardening, everyone has to start somewhere and what’s really important is creating a space you are proud of and enjoy.
“It’s clear from our research that homeowners feel they need assistance in their garden and we’re here to help.
“With the right tools to hand and a willingness to try something new, it’s possible to make gardening tasks easier and to create a beautiful outdoor space to enjoy throughout the summer.”
Ironically, given our lack of gardening know-how, 73 per cent of those polled said their outdoor space was quite or very important to them.