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The Best Gear and Attire for in the Garden

Tried and True Accessories for the Avid (and Fashionable!) Gardener

This is the final step in Planter Box Gardening 101 series: Understanding which clothing and accessories make for the easiest planter box garden. Gardening is not just a hobby; it's a lifestyle! As you embark on your journey to cultivate the perfect garden oasis, you'll quickly realize that what you wear can make all the difference between a delightful outdoor experience and a messy, uncomfortable adventure. Let's explore the best types of clothing to wear when gardening, from head to toe, ensuring you look fabulous while you nurture your green thumb.

Growing Plants

"Gardening requires lots of water - most of it in the form of perspiration."
— Louise Erickson

Hats Off to Style and Sun Protection


Let's start from the top – literally! A good hat is a gardener's best friend, providing shade for your face and protection from the elements. It is easily the most important of all garden attire.


Opt for a wide-brimmed hat to shield yourself from the sun's harsh rays while maintaining an effortlessly chic look. There are many great ones available that are UV-protective. 


Straw hats are not only stylish but also breathable, making them perfect for those hot summer days in the garden. Here's a favorite of mine made from crocheted seagrass. Stylish and functional! It gets me many compliments from friends and family.

For the cooler seasons or rainy days, consider a waterproof hat or a trendy beanie. You'll stay dry and stylish, and be able to weather those ups and downs of the cooler gardening seasons!

Shirts & Jackets– Keep It Light, Layered, and Optionally Waterproof


When it comes to the upper body, lightweight and breathable fabrics are key to your garden attire. Some days I can garden in a t-shirt from morning to late afternoon. Most days, however, I adapt along with the temperatures. 


I start with a t-shirt under a long-sleeve t-shirt or a hooded sweatshirt. My gardening wardrobe is not just the place where stained clothes go to retire. Instead, I have a few dedicated shirts and sweatshirts that I love to wear in the yard. The reason I choose clothes I like in the garden is because sometimes I'll have to make a last-minute trip to the nursery or garden supply store. If I'm too dressed down, then I'm inclined to change clothes before making that trip. Who has time for that?

For those unexpected rain showers, I've invested in a light waterproof jacket. A waterproof jacket with ventilation features (pit zips, etc.) will keep you dry without making you feel like you're in a sauna. A hood is always a bonus!

Gloves – The Unsung Heroes of Gardening

I always wear gloves in the garden. They are a surprising secret weapon of mine while working the yard. I find that when I'm wearing gloves, I'm more inclined to get in there! To dig, lift, and do the messy tasks that a thriving garden requires. 

When it comes to work gloves, choose a sturdy pair with reinforced fingertips for durability. Go for a bright color or a playful pattern to infuse some fun into your gardening routine. 

Consider specialized gloves for different tasks – leather gloves for heavy-duty work, breathable gloves for warm days, and waterproof gloves for those muddy endeavors. Your hands will thank you for the protection, and you'll harness my secret superpower that comes every time I put them on! My hero name - Super Weeder! 

I use two different types of gloves when working in the garden.

1. Light, water-resistant, machine washable. This is my "every day" gardening glove. I buy these in packs so that I can easily grab a new pair if yesterday's are dirty. They range in designs from simple to fabulous. Click here to see my favorite low-cost gloves. 

2. Heavy duty gloves for shoveling and big projects. I alternate between my ever day gloves and a pair of heavy duty work gloves. There are many options to choose from - canvas, suede, cowhide, deerskin, synthetic leather. Everyone has their own preference. My mom sent me two pairs of suede gloves just like these that I love! I do put mine in the washing machine occasionally, and simply air dry them after the wash. I prop them on a plastic cup to allow airflow inside the gloves and leave them on the counter for a day. 

Pants That Stand Up to Dirt


Getting dirty almost inevitably happens when gardening, so your choice of pants is crucial. On any given day working with my planter box garden, I stoop, kneel, squat, and sit directly on the ground. I need to be able to move with ease and without constrictions. Gardening is also a fairly wet activity. Whether watering my new seedlings in my greenhouse, planting a new plant in the ground, or building my seedling blocks, getting wet will happen. 

I opt for comfortable, flexible, and breathable bottoms like loose corduroys or lightweight jeans. Dark colors are my friend, as they can camouflage dirt and stains, allowing me to transition seamlessly from the garden to trips to the garden store without a wardrobe change.

On rainy days, waterproof pants or denim overalls can be a game-changer. Not only will they keep you dry, but they also add a touch of flair to your gardening attire. I keep a pair of Carhartt pants just for days like this. I find that Carhartt's are somewhat water repellant (the thick fabric keeps them from absorbing every drop). Say goodbye to soggy bottoms and hello to warmth and getting things done!

Footwear – Protection for the Elements

The right footwear can make or break your gardening experience. I alternate between two types of footwear: easy slip-on rubber boots, and sturdy "big project" shoes or boots.


Rubber boots: Since gardening is typically a messy and wet experience, it's important to have water protection when working with your planter box garden or plants. Enter the unsung heroes of garden fashion – rubber boots. Not only do they protect your feet from mud and puddles, but they also add a touch of whimsy to your ensemble.

I have two types of rubber boots: the easy-to-slip-on short garden clogs, and a pair of taller, calf-height rubber boots. Western Chief makes the cutest garden clogs which I buy on Amazon. They have two dozen colors and styles to choose from and are well-worth the purchase. Whether I'm going to the greenhouse to clip fresh herbs for a meal, or clipping a cute bouquet for the kitchen table, these are my go-to garden shoe. 

I also have a beloved pair of Muck Boots. These are my heavy duty project boots, especially for gardening in the cold weather of fall or spring. There's a reason why Muck Boots are so popular. They provide snug comfort, waterproof foot protection, and hold up better than any other boot I've purchased. Yes - they are worth it!

Sturdy Footwear - Some days, I know that I'll be buzzing about the garden or greenhouse. I need something between a slip-on garden clog and a heavy duty boot. Therefore, I keep a pair of retired athletic shoes just for this purpose. These Nikes have clocked countless miles in my yard alone! Others prefer to invest in a sturdy pair of work boots. I have several friends in the Master Gardener program who swear by their favorite pair of work boots. We each have our own preferences and styles, but we all get great results in the garden!


Whichever you prefer (athletic shoes or work boots), good traction to keep you steady on uneven terrain. Look for options with breathable linings to prevent your feet from feeling like they're in a sauna, even on warm days. Your feet will stay dry and comfortable.

Happy Growing!

Gardening is not just about cultivating plants; it's about cultivating your style in the great outdoors. With the right combination of hats, jackets, gloves, pants, boots, and accessories, you can turn your gardening routine into a fun and comfortable experience. So, embrace your inner fashionista, step into the garden with confidence, and let your style bloom as beautifully as your plants!





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