While gardening can be a relaxing and fun activity, it can also be a challenge if you don’t own the right types of garden tools. Ensure that you are fully prepared for any gardening challenge by having these twelve indispensable tools for every gardener.
1. Hose with Adjustable Nozzle
Mother Nature often takes care of most watering requirements – you can’t beat the natural water of rain when it comes to watering your garden. However, there are times when you need to take action yourself. At such times, a hose with a quality spray nozzle can provide the solution. A Flexzilla hose and a Melnor Rear Trigger 7-Pattern Nozzle, with various spray settings, are a robust and decently priced combination you won’t regret owning. Make sure that you buy a hose that is long enough to comfortably reach to all areas of your garden.
2. A Pair of Sturdy Gloves
As you will appreciate gardening can be really tough on your hands. If your garden has sharp or rough weeds and leaves, it can cause scrapes and cuts, which can easily become infected. Soil may embed itself underneath your nails. There’s also the possibility that whilst you are digging you might find yourself accidentally grabbing hold of an unpleasant worm or a large spider. In order to protect your hands, get yourself some decent gardener’s gloves, such as the Garden Genie. These gloves come in a two pair pack; one with claws, to help with planting, and another without the claws.
3. Good Quality Spade
A good spade is really the workhorse of the garden and one of the most used types of garden tools by every gardener. Invest in a decent quality one and it will last a lifetime. It is used predominantly for digging but it is also useful for moving quantities of soil from one area to another. The best blades are made from stainless steel. They are not only the most durable but the smoothness prevents soil sticking and makes digging much easier. Spear & Jackson are a well-known and reputable maker of stainless steel spades.
4. A Robust Garden Fork
A great complimentary tool to the spade for breaking up and working the soil, is the garden fork. The straight tines make easier work of digging into and separating compacted or more clay-based soils. For strength and durability look for forged carbon steel with square tines. Spear and Jackson also manufacture high quality digging forks.
5. Versatile Rakes
There are two types of rakes, and you will find that you will almost certainly want to get both.
Traditional leaf rakes are useful for removing large debris and leaves from the garden and surrounding areas. The Jardineer Lightweight Adjustable Leaf Rake is a high-quality rake that you can consider.
The other type is a garden rake which is useful for preparing the soil before you sow seeds or plant up. If you want an effective and durable garden rake, the Bully Tools Bow Rake with a Fiberglass Handle makes a great choice.
6. A Sturdy Wheelbarrow
In all but the smallest garden, a wheelbarrow has proved itself to be one of the most essential tools for every gardener. It is useful for transporting tools and heavy materials, such as soil and compost, around the garden. The traditional design is one wheel guided by two handles at the rear, which makes it extremely maneuverable. Plastic barrows are lighter but metal versions, such as True Temper Steel Wheelbarrow, are more durable.
7. Multipurpose Hoe
A hoe is one of the more common types of garden tools and is useful for preparing the soil for planting and for clearing weeds. It can be used to form trenches or to earth up the soil around certain crops as they grow. The blade can be used to cut of the roots of weeds just below the surface. A versatile hoe is the Japanese style Nejiri sharpened blade hoe. It easily breaks up solid soil and the sharp cutting blade makes short work of weeds.
8. Watering Wand
A useful attachment for your hose is a watering wand. The extended length will allow you to deliver the correct amount of water to those hard to reach places, such as hanging baskets or a vertical garden. The fine water pattern also makes it ideal to provide a gentle shower to freshly planted seed beds or seedlings, so that they are not damaged. Green Mount make a good sprayer wand.
9. Small Soil Shovel or Trowel
You will certainly find a soil shovel to be indispensable, as part of your garden toolkit. It is one of the most adaptable types of garden tools for the gardener and can be useful for scooping soil, digging up soil when planting, and for digging up plants for transport or removal. A small trowel is perfect for gardening purposes due to the compact size; it will virtually act as an extension of your hand. A good choice is the Homes Garden Carbon Steel Bend Proof Shovel, which will satisfy most requirements.
10. Seating or Kneeling Pad
Whilst you are gardening you find yourself bending over, crouching down and sitting a great deal. You can make things a lot more comfortable by using a quality seating pad. A thick seating or kneeling pad can prolong your endurance for gardening, as you will suffer less fatigue and avoid sore knees. You can get a pack of two quality seating pads from Navy Penguin, at a reasonable cost.
11. A Selection of Shears
Regardless of whether you are pruning, weeding or just looking to cut something up you will inevitably need garden shears. These are essentially heavy-duty scissors that are designed to effortlessly cut through branches and plant material and are must have tools for every gardener. A good pair of bypass pruners, or secateurs will safely prune, shape and trim smaller plants. For thicker and tougher growth, a lopper is required. You will find iGarden’s pack of three shears a reliable option for most requirements.
12. Soil Knife
A soil knife is useful for anything that involves digging or slicing, including digging into hard soil at the beginning of the year. A particularly versatile design is the Hori-Hori knife, a traditional Japanese gardening tool. It has a sharp edge for cutting and trimming jobs and a serrated edge for sawing through tough items. The blade is slightly concave so it can be used as a quasi-trowel. Sensei Tools make a highly rated and durable knife.
Other Items to Consider
Gardener’s Tool Belt or Tote
As you move around the garden it is handy to be able to keep your tools tidy and readily accessible. One way of doing this is to have a tool belt or a tote. There is a wide selection available. To give you some ideas, check out my article “9 Must Have Garden Tool Belts”.
Protection from the Sun
If you are working in the garden when the sun is shining brightly, you will need some protection from getting burnt. Ideally you should use a sunblock of SPF50+ and wear a sunshade hat. For more information on sun hats see my article “Best Sun Protection Hats for Gardeners“.
Stakes and Garden Twine
A tidy vegetable garden requires a plan and structure and stakes and twine are just the materials for this. They will not only arrange clearly defined areas to the garden but can provide support for climbing plants, such as beans. A well-designed garden can be very visually satisfying.
Although it is not exactly a tool, you will find that chicken wire can have many uses. If you are worried about birds, deer, possums, or any other animals consuming your fruits and vegetables, chicken wire is useful for protecting your crops. Chicken wire manufactured by Amagebeli is galvanized and a good choice.
Rubber Garden Shoes
If you have clay or boggy soil you will find a comfortable pair of waterproof rubber boots or shoes a necessity, to cope with the wet and sticky conditions. The Muck Boot Muckster garden shoes, which are made from neoprene with a rubber sole, provide an excellent solution.
If you have the right types of garden tools, it will make your gardening so much easier and more pleasurable. The above list is not exhaustive it but it includes the basic tools for every gardener and will cover you for most of the tasks that you will encounter. Nonetheless, you will probably find that you add specialized tools for specific tasks as you progress on your gardening journey.
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