Gently Guide the Garden Hose through the Garden
In the land of underground irrigation and sprinklers it seems surprising to find garden hoses dragged across the yard. Gardeners in cooler climates and regions, where automatic sprinklers are less common, garden hoses and guides are a way of life for homeowners. In the south garden hoses provides spot watering, especially during periods of intense summer heat. Garden guides protect the garden, provide efficient movement of hose, and offer opportunities to express our personalities.
As in so many garden products there is considerable diversity ranging from extremely utilitarian to elegant and ornamental. Some guides are better than others.
Diversity of ornamental hose guides allows persona
- A support stake that is pushed into the ground
- Spindles that help the hose glide past the guide
- Ornamental features appear on all except for the most utilitarian
- Easy to install
Some propose cutting one-inch PVC pipe and sliding it down over a length of rebar. This undoubtedly supports the hose drag and protect plants from the dragging hose, but unless you paint a garden scene on the PVC pipe, this is an unattractive option -- functional but too utilitarian for a flower garden. We gardeners can do better! My favorites are cast iron with smooth turning spindles, and whimsical ornamentation. Wander my garden and you'll see several different styles.
Very Utilitarian - But Does it Do the Deed?
The Suncast Hose Guide Spike
This hose guide is pedestrian and affordable but it's realistic if you need a dozen or so hose guides right away. The spike is easily pushed into all types of soils, including my loamy clay soil. I find that it’s also easily pulled out of my soil, especially when I’m hurrying and yanking it around. It’s very utilitarian in appearance and once more interesting (and affordable) hose guides were located this was quickly replaced. I continue to keep it in obscure locations of the garden, under dense shrubs, but not in key turning locations that receive more force from the hose.
Whimsy in the Garden
Bunny Hose Guides
While cute, the Bunny Hose Guides are too tall for most soils, the finish chips off and the underlying metal rusts--when looking for hose guides look elsewhere. The black finish began chipping off. I used these one year in Illinois and found rust in the places where the finish was wearing away. (Actually it was in the soil less than one year - they were removed, cleaned and stored over winter before being returned to the garden in the spring.) In Texas, the lower third of the stake quickly rusted, even with cleaning.
Magical glow and garden guide
Illuminarie Hose Guide
This is one of my more attractive hose guides and I'd probably buy it for that purpose alone if on sale, but the soft nighttime glow is non-existent. The hose guide performs as intended except for the glow. The globe and finial combination is attractive so it will remain until it is no longer sturdy. If, however, you are hoping for a soft, subtle light for your garden path I recommend looking elsewhere. This makes me want to buy inexpensive solar lights designed for the garden and use them as hose guides.
Very ornamental and functional
Fleur de Lis Cast Iron Hose Guide with Gazing Globe
Even with an in-ground sprinkler system I find use of a hose is occasionally necessary. I'm also fond of the whimsical and artsy influence of eclectic hose guides. The spindle on this model turns. No matter what your need, this heavy-duty cast-iron Fleur de Lis hose guide is multi-purpose and reliably functional thanks to the seven-inch stakes. It really worked in the cottage garden that framed the front of my large Victorian house.
Non-spindle hose guides, simple yet effective
The Rumford Gardener U-Shaped Plastic Guide is plastic, it's not very sturdy, and too much hose pull will break this inflexible guide. It's definitely not recommended by this gardener.
Joined:Jul 19, 2005
In the spring your hands should smell like soil, in our house our puppy smells like soil and puppy. All is right in the world.
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