Depending on where you live, you may have already begun digging in your garden this year! We are ALMOST there…but not quite. I can’t wait! I’m itching to get my fingers back in the dirt! Of course with the fun of digging in the dirt comes the related chores, but today we’re sharing a super easy project that will make at least one of those chores easier!
What if rather than having to do a major cleaning of your gardening tools a couple of times a year, you could keep them clean and maintained every day, without even trying!? Well the good news is you CAN! And all it takes this a quick and easy DIY project. :-)
A terra-cotta pot filled with a mixture of sand and mineral oil makes a perfect home for your small gardening tools. The sand is abrasive, so the simple act of taking your tools out and putting them back in helps keep your tools sharp. The addition of oil to the sand keeps your tools well-lubricated, protecting them from rust and dirt build-up.
To make your own cleaning and sharpening garden tool holder, you’ll need:
- a mid-size terra-cotta pot
- spray paint (optional)
- pottery sealer (optional)
- a large bucket
- mineral oil
Start by painting your pot, if you want to! I used a paint and primer combo from Rust-Oleum, and it took two coats inside and out to cover the pot completely. Once the paint was dry to the touch, I sprayed a layer of pottery sealer as well, to protect my paint job from the elements.
While the paint and sealer are drying, you can mix up your sand and oil. Pour your sand into the large bucket, along with 20-30 ounces of mineral oil. (If you can’t find plain mineral oil, you can also use baby oil – which is simply mineral oil with fragrance added!) Use a trowel or other garden tool to stir the sand and the oil together until the oil is distributed evenly throughout.
If your pot has a drainage hole at the bottom, cover the hole with a couple of pieces of duct tape. If your duct tape has a macaroni design on it, all the better! ;-)
Fill your pot with the oily sand, and lightly pack it down.
Not only is this tool holder functional, but it makes a nice decorative addition to your garden too!