We now turn our attention to that love-hate relationship that every gardener has with their garden hose.
In the spring, we optimistically buy that big heavy hose that is guaranteed to last a lifetime and never kink. And when we see that hose all wrapped up on the store shelf, we believe those claims.
We hoist it off the shelf and drop it with a thud down into our shopping cart. We are so happy to finally be buying the last garden hose we’ll ever need. It is the one. We just know it. It says it right on the cardboard circle attached to it. This hose is going to be different, and better than all the other hoses.
Then we get it home and discover what bad manners it has. Kink? Of course, it will kink the minute you look at it and even think about watering. Heavy? So heavy you can barely stand the thought of pulling it around the garden to water. Especially when it is hot and dry and the plants really need the water. It almost gets heavier on those days, if that is possible. Leakproof? Did we even notice whether it was guaranteed not to leak before we bought it? Regardless, leak it shall, right where you hold it to water, thus soaking you more than the plants.
And will it ever drape nicely over the cute hose rack we bought for it or wind up straight on the fancy hose reel? Nope. It has no intention of ever looking as nice and neatly rolled up as it was on the store shelf. In fact, it might even start to unroll itself in your car as you are driving it home if one of the flimsy ties holding it in place comes undone.
Finally, just as you are fed up with this hose—just like you were fed up with all the other hoses you ever bought—it will spring a leak and send a fountain of water up into the air and straight down on you. It shows no respect.
What is the answer?
My answer is to buy as lightweight a hose as I can find and never, ever commit to a long-term relationship with my garden hose. We are in it for one season at best. Maybe longer if the hose behaves. This is what works for me. Perhaps it puts the hose on notice that all the bullying and taunting of those big heavy hoses will not be tolerated, and so it behaves nicely.
Plus, at even the hint of it misbehaving, I start to scroll through the internet looking for ways to recycle garden hoses into floor mats. That shows my hose who’s in charge!
This works for me. Your mileage may vary. Just remember to keep your plants watered when Mother Nature turns off the spigot during the growing season, no matter your relationship with your hose.
(Oh, that picture? That is not my current hose. I broke up with that hose years ago. My current hose and I have been going steady since last year. I’m delighted that it appears we are going to have a second year together. It is lightweight and lovely and camera shy. (Code for I’m too lazy to go take a picture of it for you.))