Gardening Gardening tools

Protecting Electrical Cord Connections

Twist and Seal outlet cover. Source:

Most gardeners find considerable use for electrical products outdoors—garden lighting, power tools, pumps, etc., not to mention Christmas lights!—and that means connecting the tool, with its short cord, to a power cord exposed to the elements. That’s fine if you’re mowing the lawn or trimming the hedge on a sunny day, but what if the cord will spend months outdoors in all kinds of weather? In that case, you should consider protecting the connection from rain and melting snow.

You can readily find plug protectors in hardware stores. Twist and Seal is perhaps the best-known brand, but there are others. There are even different models. For example, some are designed to protect single connections, others (more dome shaped) multiple connections.

DIY Cord Protector

Home-made cord protector. Source: and, montage:

Or you can make your own electrical cord connector from a margarine or yoghurt tub. Here’s how:

  1. Turn the tub over and make a straight cut along the bottom with a utility knife (X-Acto).
  2. Continue the cut on both ends of the slit, down to about ½ the height of the container.
  3. Cut a hole large enough for the cord or cords at the end of both slits.
  4. Push the connected cords into the container through the slit so their cables come out through the holes. The slit will close over the cords.
  5. Put the lid on the container.
  6. Turn it right side up.

You now have a weather-resistant home-made power cord protector!

Larry Hodgson is one of Canada’s best-known garden communicators. He has notably been editor-in-chief of HousePlant Magazine, Fleurs, Plantes et Jardins, À Fleur de Pot and Houseplant Forum magazines and is currently the garden correspondent for Le Soleil and radio garden commentator for CKIA-FM Radio. He has written for many garden publications in both the United States and Canada, including Canadian Gardening, Harrowsmith, Horticulture, Fine Gardening and Organic Gardening. He also speaks frequently to horticultural groups throughout Canada and the U.S. His book credits include The Garden Lover’s Guide to Canada, Complete Guide to Houseplants, Making the Most of Shade, Perennials for Every Purpose, Annuals for Every Purpose, and Houseplants for Dummies, as well as nearly 60 other titles in English and French. He is a past president of the Garden Writers Association (now Garden Communicators International) and the winner of the prestigious 2006 Garden Media Promoter Award offered by the Perennial Plant Association. He resides in Quebec City, Quebec, Canada.

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