If you are just starting a garden and you are in the market for the most suitable gardening tools, you might be tempted to go a little overboard and buy everything that crosses your eyes in the store. The truth is you will most likely not going to need that many tools to begin with, especially if you are contemplating the thought of growing an eco-garden and do things the easy way.
Secondly, gardening tools usually take up a lot of space, and if your gardening shed or garage is not big enough, you may have problems storing all your tools, especially the bulky ones. Thirdly, gardening tools can get pricy, so if you are working on a tight budget, you might want to limit your shopping to the essential gardening tools every gardener should have.
Without further ado, here are a few of the most important garden tools that every novice gardener should add to the cart for any garden project, no matter how big or small.
Gardening Tools Essentials: Gloves
Whether gardening is just a new hobby you would like to try or you feel compelled to give eco-friendly gardening a try and bring your own contribution to saving the planet, kudos. You are going to enjoy one of the most pleasant, relaxing, and fulfilling activities in the outdoors, not to mention the health benefits you are going to reap from your organic garden and being out in the natural light of the sun a few hours a week.
Even if you are just thinking about planting and growing flowers for your own amusement, you are still going to enjoy lots of stress-relieving benefits from it.
However, as relaxing and enjoyable as it might sound, gardening is not all fun and giggles. In fact, it can rapidly turn into a pretty thorny activity that is prone to give you some headache (and minor injuries here and there, especially when splinters are involved). That is, unless you are wearing the right pair of gardening gloves. Wondering how to shop for quality gloves? Read on:
- Choose gloves that are sturdy enough, made of durable materials, but make sure they are not overly-bulky. You will be working with tiny seeds and plans, transplanting them and picking up weeds and you will want to enjoy as much freedom of movement for your fingers as possible.
- Never buy a new pair of gardening gloves unless you have tried them on first. A pair of gloves that does not properly fit your hands will cause a series of problems, ranging from slip-off accidents that will interfere with your gardening work to blisters.
- Opt for gloves that can be used in and around water, since you will need to constantly water your garden and inevitably touch moist items in the soil or wet tools. At the same time, see that the gloves are made from a breathable fabric so your hands can enjoy maximum comfort and coolness, especially in the warm season, if you live someplace arid. It is best to look for garden gloves that are made from a quality high-tech sport material that is water-proof fabric and extremely breathable. Lots of gloves feel almost like wearing a second skin on your hands, so make sure you personally test a few pairs and make sure you invest in the most comfortable one you can find.
- Choose a pair of gloves with long cuffs so your wrists can be properly protected against potential scratching, as well as to keep the soil and dirt from getting inside the gloves.
Once you have found the ideal pair of gardening gloves, make sure that you have them stored someplace safe, cool, out of direct sunlight and water. Also, make sure there aren’t any pesky bugs that could wreak havoc on your gloves.
Getting a second pair of gloves just in case something happens to your main pair is also a good idea. Also, you never know when the kids or your significant other might decide to join you.
Invest In Quality Hand Pruners
Also known as pruning shears or secateurs, hand pruners will help you reign in those plants that are simply trying to take over your garden. Which are the best types of pruning shears to invest your money in? Let’s find out together.
Opting for anvil-like hand pruners with a cut that features sharp blades passing by flat surfaces, similar to a knife on a board, is one idea to consider. These are suitable for dead wood, as they can and injure green stems and branches.
On the other hand, a bypass secateurs will use sharp blades running by a flat surfaces with sharp edges, similar to a pair of scissors. Bypass pruners are a lot more useful for green wood and plants that are alive.
You could also choose ratcheting pruners that have a stronger cut and which are suitable for persons who do not have a lot of strength in their hands or for people who suffer from arthritis. The more powerful these pruners are, the better they will cut through hard and thick branches.
No matter what model you might choose, make sure the pruners will perfectly fit into your palms for extra comfort and efficiency. Remember to periodically have your pruners sharpened so you can always benefit from the cleanest cuts and also to cause fewer inures to your plants.
Buy The Best Loppers For Your Gardening Toolbox
Loppers are essential gardening tools used for cutting and they look like pruners with long handles. They are mostly used for trimming areas that are more difficult to access, as well as for cutting those tree branches that are thicker. With the help of the longer handles, you will be able to benefit extra leverage needed to cut a branch diameter of one inch or more.
You could opt for anvil loppers and bypass loppers and choose loppers with handles measuring anywhere between 16 to 36 inches. If you are searching for some extra light loppers, you could buy some with handles made form carbon-composite or aluminum.
Keep in mind the most precise loppers when it comes to their precision when cutting are bypass loppers. Also, the longer the handle, the heavier the tool. Think really hard at what you will need to cut with the loppers and also how far you plan on reaching and shop for the most suitable lopper handle length.
For good maintenance, make sure the blades of the loppers stay in top condition and have them sharpened on a regular basis.
Garden Forks For Turning and Digging Soil
Garden forks are other essential garden tools every gardener should have. They are useful at digging into soil that is more dense, as well as for turning the soil. There are different models you could opt for, such as:
- Garden forks with straight lines, which are more suitable for digging soil that has a lot of clay or rocks in it, as well as for soil that is very compacted
- Garden forks that feature a small curve to the spines which are more suitable for turning pitchfork
- Garden tools that feature square tines are sturdier compared to models that have tines that are flat and they can also bend when when hitting rocks and roots.
Buy a garden digging forks that can withstand rust and has an ergonomic handle with an anti-slipping grip, preferably made of stainless-steel.
Hand Trowels For Weeds
Another handy tool for any gardener is the hand trowel. This is a special tool that is used for planting new containers, as well as for transplanting bedding herbs or plant bulbs and pulling out weeds and cutting roots a lot faster. How to shop for the best and trowels?
- Choose one that has a broad blade so you can move more soil at once.
- Hand trowels with longer blades that are also more narrow are great for digging up weeds or for working in soil with a lot of rocks in it.
- Buy a model that perfectly match the palm of your hand and invest in one that is made from stainless steel, or one that has a head made of stainless steel so you can enjoy extra durability.
Spades, The Garden’s Workhorses
Garden spades are square shovels featuring short handles that are used to dig holes to lift sod or plants, do edging or move around small amounts of dirt. Spades cost more than other essential gardening tools, but, chances are, should you invest in a reliable model, you should be able to enjoy it for the rest of your life as a gardener.
What to look for in a good garden spade?
- Take a look at the treads placed on top of the blades. They should provide a sturdy and comfortable surface you can place your foot on and give the spade an extra push, when needed.
- Spade handles made from ash hardwood tend to have a longer lifespan and they are also better at absorbing vibrations and shocks.
- Choose long or short-handled spades, on your liking, but keep in mind spades with longer handles offer extra leverage, while weighing more.
- A spade with a head made of stainless steel is also sturdier and it will not be affected by rust.
Rakes For Whisking Debris and Leaves
Start with a standard rake for your leaves – it is also part of the essential gardening tools that all gardeners should own. You could opt for a rake that can be adjusted for extra versatility in use and reach garden areas that are more narrow and difficult to reach, or to gather larger piles of debris and leaves. You could also opt for rakes with tines made of steel for extra durability. These tend to be rougher on lawns compared to rakes with tines made of plastic.
The type of garden you own will help you shop for the right hoes. For instance, running a vegetable garden will require you to invest in a wide hoes that is sturdier. For a perennial garden, you may want to direct your attention toward a hoes that is thinner.
The hoes will help you prepare your garden as well as any flower beds and cutting down the amount of weeds. Make sure you buy a hoes that has a long reach handle that is also convenient to hold in your hand.
Choosing a sharp blade will simplify your work by a lot. A weeding hoes is also known as a stirrup hoes and it features an open head that is shaped like a square. The head will be pushed with movements that will go back and forth beneath the surface of the soil and it will cut down anything growing on top. A flat hoes is suitable for a vegetable garden with rows that need to be turned.
Watering Cans And Wands
Other essential gardening tools are watering cans and watering wands. Make sure you allow your plants to be gently rained on with a nice shower with the help of water breaking out of a want. Opt for a model with an extended reach and choose the lengths that is most suitable for your custom needs. The length varies from 10 up to 48 inches.
A watering can is made of either metal or plastic and you can choose your favorite color, size or style and even nozzle. Metal water cans need to be galvanized in order to withstand rust. A model with two handles and a sprinkle nozzle that can be removed is a good idea for all gardeners. Shop for a BPA-free model with a capacity of at least 2.5 gallons.
Also known as pruning shears or secateurs, hand pruners are used to reign in plants that are taking over a garden.
Loppers are essential gardening tools used for cutting and they look like pruners with long handles. They are mostly used for trimming areas that are more difficult to access, as well as for cutting those tree branches that are thicker.