Depending on how elaborate your garden is, you’ll need a varying array of tools to get the job done. If you have just a few potted plants, a few hand tools will suffice. But if you’ve planted a full garden with rows of plants you hope to harvest come fall, you’re going to need some more robust tools to get the job done. Here are 10 essential garden tools and what they’re used for.
A trowel will easily be among the most used and important tools in your arsenal. It’s essentially a handheld shovel that you’ll use for moving soil, digging, removing weeds, mixing fertilizer and much more.
Garden trowels come in all kinds of shapes and sizes and are typically made of a combination of plastic or wood handles with stainless steel.
For jobs too big for your trowel, a spade will be your tool of choice. A spade is usually a short-handled shovel, often made with a rectangular blade and a perpendicular “D” handle for extra grip when digging.
Unlike a pointed, bowl-shaped shovel, which is best used for digging and breaking up soil, a spade is better suited for slicing through stubborn roots and moving loose soil.
A bow rake can be used to gather or clear loose debris around your garden, and they’re often made of sturdier steel than a leaf rake. This makes them better for light tilling work, weeding, leveling soil and spreading loose material like mulch.
If you’re working in a small area and don’t want to damage existing plants, you probably won’t want to break out the large rake for a small job. For this, you’d use a hand rake.
Hand rakes, similar to their larger siblings, come in multiple forms and are used for similar jobs, just on a smaller scale. For gathering or clearing debris, there are light duty hand rakes with flexible tines. But you’ll also find heavy-duty, steel hand rakes with stiff tines for breaking up soil and light tilling.
A hoe is a classic garden tool. There are a number of different types, but a draw hoe – with a flat blade at the end of a typically wooden handle – is the most common.
The blade is perpendicular to the handle, making it very handy for moving and shaping soil, and weeding. Hoes can also be used for digging narrow and shallow trenches for planting.
Gone are the days of spending hours on your hands and knees to get all the pesky weeds out of your garden. While many tools in your arsenal can help weed your garden, few tools do it better than the one designed specifically to, well, pull weeds.
Weed pullers come in a bevy of different styles, but the idea is usually the same: Entangle the weed in the teeth, twist or clamp and then pull. Some weed pullers also have a leverage bar so you can pull the weeds out at an angle. Theoretically, the weed should be removed from the soil, roots included.
These are gardening tools that you can buy.