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Garden Hand Tools Buying Guide


You need the right tool for digging, weeding and planting in your garden. It doesn’t matter whether you are an experienced gardener or a beginner to getting your fingers green, using the best tool can make garden maintenance easy.

However, there are so many to choose from and it can be confusing to find the right garden hand tool. This is where we can help, here’s our guide to help you find the perfect garden hand tool!

Before you Start...

What gardening jobs are you doing?

To help you choose the most suitable tool for the job, start thinking of what jobs you’ll be tackling. Are you picking through loosened soil to remove weeds? Or are you digging very compacted soil that has had little work done to it? If you are creating new beds or borders you will need to stock up on tools that will not only help you establish the area but also help you dig over the soil.

With all this in mind we recommend that you use smaller and thinner tools for manoeuvring around established plants and shrubs and that you should use bigger and more hardwearing tools for digging over unprepared ground.

What’s your soil like?

Soil type will determine the type of tool you will need. For example, if you have heavy soil that is hard to break up then you will need heavy-duty tools, whereas lighter and looser soil can be worked on with lighter tools.

For Weeding & Ground Preparation

Garden shovels –

These are used to dig, scoop and lift soil or other material.

Garden forks –

Garden forks and used in a similar way to digging spades, but the tines/prongs make it easier pushing into the ground which makes it a better choice for harder soil. There are two types of garden forks, a digging fork which is used for heavier jobs like digging heavy and compacted soil and border forks which are smaller and lighter than digging forks which have shorter tines.

Garden hand forks –

These are used to aerate and turn the top layer of soil and remove weeds by the root.

Hoes & cultivators –

Hoes and cultivators are used to loosen and break up weeds and the top layer of soil.

Weeders –

This is a tool that is specially designed to remove weeds.

For Planting & Digging

Garden spades -

These might look like shovels, but they work differently, spades are used to cut through roots and plant material. There are also two types of spades, a digging spade which is used for heavy-duty work and then a border spade which is smaller and lighter.

Garden hand trowels, scoops & transplanters -

If you want to move around existing plants or want to dig out weeds without disturbing the soil, then you will need to get a hand trowel. You can also use a hand trowel for planting bulbs and seedlings and repotting plants. Scoops work best for moving compost into troughs, pots and hanging baskets. Transplanters work in the same way as a hand trowel except their heads are a lot narrower.

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