Lifting and moving techniques

Gardening generally involves some heavy work, so it pays to equip yourself with adequate carting and carrying equipment. You also need to learn how to lift heavy loads and how to move specific large objects, such as a heavy container, without injuring yourself.

Your choice of lifting and moving equipment depends to some degree on the size and nature of your garden. Whatever load you are attempting to lilt, remember to bend at the knees to pick it up, rather than bending your back. If you keep your back straight, your legs rather than your spine will take the strain of the load, with much less chance of damage.
In small gardens, instead of a wheelbarrow it may be more practical to opt for a small but sturdy dolly, which can be used to move heavy objects such as compost bags or containers. Slide the load onto the lip and then tilt the dolly to move it. Ideally, you need a second person to help you steady the load as you maneuver the dolly to its destination.


If you have an average-sized or large plot, you will almost certainly need a wheelbarrow of some kind. There are two principal types: the traditional wheelbarrow with a fairly narrow. single, solid wheel or a wheel with a pneumatic tire, and the ball-wheeled barrow, which has a round ball-like single wheel. 1 he former is best for transporting heavy loads on solid ground, and the latter if you are wheeling across newly dug land. Remember that if you invest in a good-quality metal wheelbarrow, although it will generally last longer than a cheaper plastic one, it will rust eventually (although storing the wheelbarrow upside down when not in use will delay the process).

Carrying sheets or bags

These are usually made from woven plastic and have carrying handles (at each corner for sheets). They are ideal for trans-porting pruning waste or large quantities of sales.


Traditional shallow baskets made of wood can be used for a variety of garden tasks, from hand Moving heavy materials (right) 7b avoid buck injury, always maintain an upright posture when moving a heavily laden wheelbarrow. Provided that you do not overload the wheelbarrow, it should move perfectly smoothly over the majority 0/garden surfaces. And vegetables from the garden. Plastic baskets are available, and although they are more durable, they are a great deal less pleasing aesthetically.

Moving heavy containers

When you have to move heavy containers around, you must plan ahead. You need a helper, and you will also need a heavy-duty hoard and several dowels— lengths of narrow-gauge piping arc ideal. With the aid of your helper, slide the container onto the piece of board, the front end of which has been raised using a length of piping or doweling. Then slide a second piece of piping under the front end of the board, and roll the board with the container on it forward, placing a
third piece of piping under the front end. Pick up the first piece of piping as it emerges from the tail end of the board, and insert it at the front. In this way, you can roll the board with the container on it over level surfaces.

Alternative method

All you need for this is a helper and a large piece of strong plastic. Rock the container slightly until it rests on top of a large piece of plastic. You and your helper then grasp one corner of the plastic each and slowly pull the plastic along, complete with its load, to the new site. This is a very straight forward method, but you should try still to adopt a sale posture so as not to cause yourself serious injury.


If you do not have a wheelbarrow or dolly on hand but you do have a helper nearby, you can utilize other materials to move heavy containers around the garden.
Alternative method (above) Containers con also be moved by placing them on heavy plastic sheeting and then dragging (hem to their new position. Always have a helper, keep a low center 0f gravity, and do not overexert yourself.
1 Begin i>y using a strong plank o) wood full is wide enough to earn’ your container. Place a dowel beneath it/or leverage, then drag the container onto the plank.
2 Immediately place another dowel beneath the plonk and begin to push the improvised wheelbarrow along. As each dowel drops out at the hack, place it at the front.
3 You now have sufficient momentum to push the container to its new location. Obviously, this will only work on flat, hard surfaces, not grass or gravel.

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