Monday, November 29, 2010

Quiet weekend

Yucca flower
Due to Thanksgiving and wet weather, we didn't do much gardening at the weekend. We did buy some much-needed tools at Center Hardware for the garden though:

1 digging bar (our old one was stolen)
1 folding handsaw (for midweight pruning)
1 broom (no more broken, ratty, handle-less brooms!)
1 machete

I went right out to the garden and used the folding handsaw to saw off 5 arms from the big Agave americana variegata which were old. Worked a treat! Then I went down the street to the SPUR project (now known as the Pennsylvania Railroad Garden) area and tried to machete down some fennel plants. I was very excited to do that - the fennel has been bugging me, and I've always wanted a machete! Well, it was a disappointment: the machete was quite dull.

Salvia gesneriflora "Tequila"
I went home and looked up how to sharpen machete blades. Apparently, if you buy machetes that cost less than $50 they are always dull. This one was $15.99 so you can imagine the level of bluntness. If you are a skinny Crocs-wearing Brit living in Panama, this is your best option to sharpen things up. If you are me though, you'll probably get out your sharpening tool and try to have a go. Not much happened - the angle of the blade edges was ground too low and I'd have worn out my tool and my arm trying to hone it down. Apparently I need an electric angle-grinder.

I looked online again and found a sharpening service that'll grind it to the right angle much faster, so that's a trip I'll need to take soon. I'll be spending $15 to get the blade sharpened on a $15 tool - gah! Perhaps I can get our horse farrier to get the angle ground for us when he comes on Friday...

Moral of the story: buy quality tools. And don't leave them in the garden, or they'll get stolen!

Pics show some recent flowers in the garden - our first ever Yucca flowers and the giant Salvia gesneriflora in the dog area.

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