How A Pool Noodle Can Protect The Delicate Produce In Your Garden

Pool noodles can be good for much more than just swimming, floating, and having fun in the water. They're also a great option for your potted plants and gardening needs. Along with saving soil in large pots and boosting tall planters, the long foam tubes are ideal for protecting the produce in your garden by acting as a safety bumper. This includes delicate fruits and vegetables like strawberries and tomatoes that can easily become bruised, split, and broken.

As your plants grow, you may need to cover them with a net or cage to keep critters and birds away. You might also want to use trellises to support the plants as they get bigger and heavier. When this happens, the plants can weigh on the cage or supports and, in turn, become damaged. You can prevent this by using a pool noodle as a buffer between metal wires and delicate stems, fruits, or veggies. As a result, anything you grow will have a safe brace to prop them up and a comfy spot to flourish. But wait! Before you run off to grab a few pool noodles, you must know how to place them in your garden properly and which ones to avoid.

The proper pool noodle garden set up

While a pool noodles shape makes them ideal for your gardening needs, you will still need to make a few adjustments to ensure they fit perfectly and stay in place. First, decide if you need thick or thin pool noodles, as are various options. You'll also want to grab a utility knife and string or thin wire.

Once you've found just what you need and gathered your supplies, it's time to head outside to the garden. Start by deciding which areas your plants and produce might need extra protection. Then, measure each section's length, height, or depth, and use these measurements and a utility knife to cut the pool noodles length-wise and into smaller sizes so that they fit these spots. This will allow you to slip the noodle onto the cage wires or wherever needed. Finally, secure the pool noodles in place with the thin wire or string. Once you're done, your garden produce will be safe from metal wires, stakes, and trellises. However, you'll also want to make sure your fruits and vegetables are safe from the pool noodles themselves since some may contain harmful toxins.

Make sure your pool noodle is safe

Pool noodles are obviously meant to keep you safe in the water and, as we mentioned before, can protect your delicate produce. However, using the wrong pool noodles might end up being a danger to your garden and, in turn, your health. Some toys, including pool noodles, are made with polyvinyl chloride (PVC) that may contain chemicals called phthalates which makes plastic bendier. However, phthalates have also been connected to health issues like hormonal problems and may be linked to asthma, obesity, and cancer, according to American Home Shield Corporation

Products with phthalates can go through off-gassing (letting off chemicals) which is why paint, mattresses, rugs, shower curtains, and, yes, pool noodles can initially smell funky. This odor can indicate that phthalates are making their way out of the item. Even if you can't detect an iffy scent, phthalates can still leak out of products when left in the sun, which surely applies to the pool noodles protecting your garden. When phthalates seep into food, you could consume them when you eat your produce. To avoid this, use the right pool noodles. Check the tag or sticker on the item and look for PVC, "V," or a standalone 3, which all indicate that polyvinyl chloride is present. Avoid these pool noodles and opt for ones that don't have these on the label, and you (as well as your produce) should be safe.