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New Tools for Home and Garden

(ARA) - As the weather gets cooler, homeowners are making mental checklists of fall chores in the yard to get the lawn and garden ready for winter. This year there are a number of new tools available that can help you decrease your work time.

Mowing the lawn right up until the first frost is important. To make the job easier, SharperBlade (www.sharperblade.com) has come up with a line of self-sharpening blades for lawn mowers, weed whackers, and edgers. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, nearly 100,000 people are sent to the ER each year due to lawn mower accidents. 10,000 of them are children. Because the SharperBlades are made of aerospace-grade polymer, they cut grass without the fear of injury to you or to things like sprinkler heads and cement walkways.

With the weed whacker blade, you can save hours by not having to replace, restring, or untangle that frustrating fishing line.

SharperBlades have a thin, yet heavy duty, nylon mesh molded into a flexible, resilient plastic blade. As the blade rotates, the outer material slowly wears away, exposing fresh new nylon at the blade's edge. This patented technology ensures that blades will always maintain a sharp cutting edge.

If you're planning a deck, porch, or patio project for fall, forget about nails and screws. Think hidden deck fasteners. Over the past decade, hidden deck fasteners have become easy to use, affordable, and preferred because they create a durable, high-end hardwood floor look without the high costs. The most popular hidden deck fastener is by Tiger Claw (www.deckfastener.com).

Tiger Claw fasteners are constructed from hardened heavy gauge stainless steel and offer outstanding hold-down power. They create a smooth "nail-free" surface that preserves the beauty of the wood and reduces splitting, splintering, cupping, and rotting. Tiger Claw has fasteners for regular and treated wood, composite lumber, like Trex, and exotic woods, like ipe, teak, mahogany, and Brazilian redwood.

Gardeners will be interested to learn that new wireless weather technology can play a key role in their success. Some of the instruments available include wireless weather stations with solar and ultraviolet radiation sensors, soil moisture and leaf wetness probes, and even computer software that allows gardeners to track, graph and analyze historical data.

"When gardening, remember that your backyard has its very own microclimate," says Joan Peterson, veteran gardener. "That means you can't rely on forecasts from the local TV station or the National Weather Service office, located miles away. Gardeners also need to keep in mind they could have more than one microclimate on their property, especially if one side of the house is shaded and protected from the wind while the other side gets direct sunlight and strong wind."

The portable, solar-powered wireless Vantage Pro weather station, by Davis Instruments (www.davisnet.com), has helped thousands of gardeners. The Vantage Pro integrated sensor suite measures outside temperature, humidity, and wind direction and speed. Its rain collector reads rainfall amounts in 0.01 inches.

With a wireless transmission, data is transferred to a battery-powered indoor console every two and a half seconds, which also measures barometric pressure along with inside temperature and humidity. Gardeners can receive a detailed forecast message that shows whether unseasonable or unusual weather conditions are likely to appear. These details can be crucial in determining planting times and choosing which varieties do best in a given location. Over 70 audible alarms can be set to notify gardeners whenever a weather variable reaches a given value. Gardeners can save time, energy, and money by simply knowing what Mother Nature has in store.

To find out more about these tools for your lawn and garden, visit www.homeandgardengal.com.


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