Gardening injuries

It's that time of year again - gardeners are invading the big box stores. But don't let their carts loaded with plants and gardening goodies intimidate you. There's a good chance the not-so-careful gardener could end up on the injured list.

All that lifting and digging can put a lot of stress on your back and other muscles. The morning after an all-day planting session will surely reveal that you have muscles you never knew you had.

Athletic therapist Russell Gunner offers these tips on avoiding gardening injuries.

Have you woken up the morning after a long day of gardening to find out you couldn't get out of bed?

Tell us your tales of gardening ouch.

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Sunburns used to be the worst of my injuries, and now I wear a big floppy hat to prevent them, with sunscreen.

Normally my injuries tend to be from spending too much time on my knees, making them sore, swollen, and hard to walk with. I think a garden stool, and kneepads are well worth the investment to keep you from hobbling about after a day planting and weeding.

Posted May 29, 2008 02:05 PM



One year's brocolli harvest left me with several thick stems that looked difficult to compost. I reasoned that cutting them into smaller pieces would help so holding the stems over the compost bin I proceeded to cut off chunks (in mid air). I've never been know for my aim and the error of my ways occured to me when the butcher knife strayed and cut deeply into my thumb nail. A full 2 years later and the nail scar still reminds me "you can't beat mother nature".

Posted June 4, 2008 04:58 AM



Using an old pair of secateurs that decided to give up the ghost while I was cutting something... My hand was black and blue for weeks and I couldn't hold a pair of secateurs for even longer.

Posted June 4, 2008 02:59 PM


My dimmest moment and my nastiest, most avoidable garden faux pas, occurred one spring while pruning a cherry tree.

I was on one of the last branches. One that measured about 8 feet long and 1.25inches in diameter. Just within the cutting power of my loppers and just barely within reach. I had my back to the trunk of the tree, and positioned the loppers around the branch. I squeezed the handles together to make the cut. It took some time and some squeezing as the branch was a little on the thick side. Not once during all the squeezing did it occur to me that: i) falling branches do not magically avoid obstacles below, and, ii) gravity does not take Sunday afternoons off.

I'd just barely felt the loppers close as the cut was completed, when I felt this nasty whack on my head, instinctively I looked at what hit me (I did mention that this was my dimmest moment, didn't I) the branch had done a wee bounce off my head and the butt of it then hit me in the eye.

I stood there in shock and disbelief, holding the top of my head with one hand and my left eye with the other. As I walked away to find my husband, to let him know of yet another of my misadventures, I tripped over the damn branch!!!

Posted June 5, 2008 04:19 PM

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