Gardening Mishaps!

Many unfortunate happenings in our garden are a result of our own carelessness and clumsiness! A fall, a scratch, an abrasion, a cut, an injection from a rusted nail or wire, a sprained back or fingers or wrist, and so on and so on…! Most of them could have been avoided or at least reduced if only we’re a little more careful!

My most often discomfort is my skin allergies resulting from gardening! Most eruptions were rather mild all these years which I had attributed to contact with disease-infested garden plants sprayed with pesticide! That’s what I thought until a serious allergy last November resulting from accidental contact with the Nerium Oleander’s toxic sap, made me realized that all my previous skin allergies could have resulted from similar contact with other many toxic plants grown in our garden!

Wear gloves! Wear gloves! Even before last November’s misfortune, I’ve been advised to use garden gloves. It’s like new broom sweeps well! So out shopping we ventured to get these garden gloves and I did use a couple of cotton gloves initially and when everything is fine, all’s forgotten again. ;) Somehow the wearing of gloves always slips my mind whenever I’m in the garden, especially carrying tasks at hand with deep concentration and mission, you know what I mean! Hehe!! Thus, I’m left with a drawer full of garden gloves (purchased and presented) – cotton, plastic, rubber, surgical or whatever which can last me another decade! :D

Ultimately, it’s inevitable that I will experience this same misfortune over and over again if I fail to remind myself to take necessary precautions!

And that’s exactly what happened again early this March when I went about trimming all the dead leaves, stems and branches, plus deadheading without wearing garden gloves! I recalled prunning the Pedilanthus Tithymaloides and cutting of the dead leaves of Dieffenbachia Maculata, Philodendron Selloum, Aglaonema Nitidum ‘Silver Queen’, Aglaonema Costatum ‘F. Foxii’, some ferns and caladiums! By mid-morning next day, the skin allergies surfaced and what terrible itch they caused! Even though most of the mentioned plants are toxic, I’ve narrowed down the cause to be the Pedilanthus Tithymaloides (Devil’s Backbone) with its milky sap dripping ‘everywhere’ so to speak and I’ve asked my better half to get rid of it once and for all!

Aaaargh!! What does it take to remind me to wear my protective gear!!

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2 Responses to “Gardening Mishaps!”

  1. New floridian Says:

    Pruned the oleander for hurricane season today, wore gloves, but one branch bounced off my arm. Just a short while later, a raised welt appeared just above the glove line. I washed all the way up to my elbows, yet it is now, about 12 hours later, even redder and starting to itch like a sonofagun. Will scrub again and apply an antibiotic ointment and take an antihistamine before bed. Will update you in the AM.
    Glad I looked this up, as it would have been a total mystery.
    Think the oleanders may go away and we’ll get those royal palms we’ve been wanting…. They are lovely, but the flowers and pods are messy.

  2. Jacqueline Says:

    Hi New floridian!
    So sorry to read of your misfortune. Hope you recover quickly and all will be well for you soon. Our oleander still thrives in our garden, but all its deadheading and pruning will be handled by my beloved John.
    A blessing in disguise, no?… now you get to grow your royal palms. ;)
    We love palms, they grow so easily, needing hardly any attention at all!

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