A beautiful garden is every homeowner’s dream. Whether it’s a flower garden with an enchanting fountain or a vegetable yard with a charming bird bath, a parcel of lush greens could improve one’s physical and mental health.
Gardening is in itself, a healing activity. According to an article in Good Housekeeping, gardening can lower blood pressure levels, reduce stress, and burn calories. No wonder homeowners do it as often as they can.
If you’ve just started gardening, chances are, you still need to beef up your knowledge on the common garden tools.
Keeping your garden in tip-top shape is important and so is having the best garden tools around. Because there are different types of garden tools around, you need to know each of them to make the most out of this fun activity you can do every other day or twice a week.
To make your gardening easy, Tools Official gives you a lowdown on the essential garden tool list from A-Z.
A for Auger
Considered as one of the best garden tools to have, an auger is a drilling device that allows you to dig deep holes for planting. It’s an essential tool for backfilling holes when putting in small plants, shrubs, or trees in the ground.
It makes planting easier as it removes part of your ground soil to give way to your new plant. An auger allows your plant or seeds to grow by giving it good soil contact from the ground.
B for Bulb Planter
A bulb planter is a device used to install plant bulbs and other similar crops to your garden.
Having this garden tool is handy, especially if you want to plant onions and garlic. It’s also useful for growing lovely flowering plants like daffodils and hyacinths.
The advantage of using a bulb planter is seeing the measurements on the tool. This makes planting bulbs faster and easier. Although various bulbs require different planting depths, using a bulb planter will save you time and effort in installing your crops.
C for Compost
Having an abundance of compost is beneficial to your garden and the environment too.
Beginners may shy away from making their own compost but it shouldn’t be too intimidating. Dry leaves, grass clippings, and egg shells are good compost materials for starters. Take some of these and mix them with your soil in a separate pot. Wood barks, newspaper, sawdust from organic wood and straw are also good to incorporate into your compost mix.
Make sure to water and stir your compost regularly. When your compost turns to dark brown color, then, it’s ready to be mixed in your garden.
Take in more materials for composting as you go along your routine. Add in some vegetable peelings, fruit trimmings, and coffee grounds, once you get used to doing it. This will provide you a thriving garden in no time.
D for Dibbers
Dibbers are pointed wooden sticks used for digging holes in the ground. They’re the perfect means to plant seeds, seedlings, and small bulbs.
There are various dibber designs available in the market today. These are the T-shaped dibber, L-shaped dibber, straight dibber, and the trowel dibber.
Dibbers also vary in material. Some are made from plastic, others are wooden or metal. T-shaped and L-shaped dibbers are easier to push and pull.
E for Edger
An edger is a perfect gardening tool for homeowners with lawns that need sectioning. Edgers are great for making neat edges on plant beds, a patio, a walkway, a driveway, or a curb.
An edger has a long handle with a spherical blade at the tip. This tip makes it ideal for smoothening the edges of your yard.
Although the main purpose of an edger is to trim the edges of an unruly turf, it shouldn’t be confused with a trimmer. Trimmers are used to cut grass while edgers create a more visible definition of your lawn’s edges.
Other gardeners use a powered edger for easier grass or weed cutting action. This type of edger is very useful for larger lawns. Just remember to wear safety gears like goggles when using it to protect your eyes from debris.
F for Forks
Forks are used in raking out stones and weeds in your garden. It’s also used to separate compacted soil.
Compacted soil needs to be broken down to allow aeration, thereby improving its quality. This way, the soil becomes rich and ready for plant growth.
Forks are also used for incorporating fertilizers, mulching, and bringing in compost mass in your garden soil. Mulching is putting on some materials like grass clippings to your garden soil to nourish it and make it moist.
G for Gloves
Gloves are one of the best garden tools around. They keep your skin from harmful elements when gardening. But with so many type of gardening gloves around, which ones do you need?
There are different types of gloves for various garden work you do. Nitrile coated gloves cover almost all gardening activity – from pruning to pulling weeds. Made from artificial rubber, this type of gloves lets you feel your plants while having the right durability, flexibility, and resistance to chemicals. It’s affordable and easy to wash, too.
Other types of gloves for gardeners include leather and cloth ones. Whatever design and material you choose, make sure you buy a hat, a pair of gardening shoots or boots, too, to complete your gardening gear.
H for Hoe
If there’s a garden tool that’s used a lot by gardeners, it’s a hoe. A versatile gear, a hoe is characterized by a long handle with a rectangular blade at the tip. It’s used for preparing the soil for planting as well as other tasks that requires digging up the soil.
There are several types of hoe available. Two of these are the scuffle hoe and the warren hoe. The scuffle hoe has a triangular base and it’s mainly used for unearthing shallow weeds. The warren hoe, on the other hand, is used for planting seeds and pulling up vegetables like potatoes and leeks.
I for Irrigation
Apart from choosing a good water hose, the amount of H2O your plants needs depend on your area’s climate, average rainfall, terrain, sunlight, and soil composition. If you’re keeping dry-loving plants, be careful not to water them frequently. The opposite goes for water-loving plants.
For soil composition alone, water retention is important in keeping your crops healthy.
Sandy soil drains water quickly and will require you to water frequently. To give this a solution, mix sandy soil with an organic matter or a compost to help retain its moisture.
Clay soil retains water for a long time. The problem with this type is it blocks your plant’s roots from growing deep within your soil. To counter this, regular aeration or proper addition of compost or organic matter should be done.
Loam soil is a mixture of sand, sediments, and clay. This nutrient-dense type of soil is ideal for keeping vegetable crops, healing herbs, flowering plants, or fruit-bearing shrubs.
Climate also plays a role in determining how much water your plants need. When climate seems to be a challenge in keeping your plants alive, pick ones that will suit the climate of your area instead.
You should also consider how much is the amount of rainfall your area receives in a month or in a year. If your area receives plenty of rainfall in a year, choose plants that thrive with plenty of water. Then, adjust your irrigation works accordingly.
Terrain is also a factor to consider when planning for irrigation. Slopes or hilly terrain makes it more challenging to develop a sound watering plan. For hilly grounds, you may seek a professional’s help or look out more strategies online to come up with the ideal watering ways and schedule.
The amount of sunlight also affects your irrigation plan. Watering early in the morning and in the afternoon are the best ways to go. However, if you have areas under direct sunlight and shaded sections, you may want to treat them differently. Areas without shade can be given drip or soaker-type watering system to reduce evaporation. Shaded sections, on the other hand, can be watered once a day as there’s not much sun reaching this part.
When choosing a garden hose, pick one that’s durable. A good hose has to stand the test of time and varying weather conditions.
J for Jars
Jars are great for keeping different types of plants. For small spaces, you can pick mason jars, clay pots, colored glass, porcelain ones, and many others, as your jar choice.
Choose one that matches your home or garden theme and decors. You can also put labels on your plants to add more style and flair to your garden.
When using mason jars, keep in mind that this container type holds water for a long time. It lacks drainage holes that other jars have, like that of clay pots. Keep water-loving plants in mason jars like basil, sage, thyme, oregano, and mint.
The bigger and deeper the jars, the better, as these can hold larger volume of soil. A deeper container will provide more room for the plants’ roots to grow.
K for Kneeler
Kneelers or kneeling pads are important to have, especially for frequent gardeners who have to tend their plants on all fours.
Choose a kneeler that’s comfortable enough to wear and easy to clean.
If you prefer to sit while planting a new crop, you can try a good kneeler seat in the market. There are a few products that doubles as a compartment that can fit different types of garden tools you have.
L for Loppers
Loppers are ideal for pruning thick twigs. Go for ones with bypass cutting blades for maximum power.
Loppers with extendable handles are also a good choice. This allows you to increase your reach for hard-to-reach branches.
Although loppers are used for cutting, sometimes, woody and thick stems may get too difficult to cut. If this happens, use other cutting tools like a pruning saw or pole saw for those tough jobs.
M for Mower
Lawn mowers are essential tools for keeping a well-manicured yard. It’s better to buy one if you’re not planning to hire a lawn service. Purchasing one is a more cost-effective choice too, especially if you have a small yard.
Most homeowners prefer to use the cordless types or batter-operated lawn mowers today. Having a cordless feature enables them to move freely and mow hard-to-reach areas in their yard without the hassle of getting entangled or having cord-related accidents.
Homeowners with small yards generally pick having either a reel mower or a rotary mower. Reel mowers cut grass like scissors while rotary mowers use fast-spinning blades to trim grass.
Reel mowers are powered by pushing the mower. They’re eco-friendly and great for people who want to put in some exercise while trimming their grass.
Rotary mowers, on the other hand, need power supply to jumpstart its rotating blades. Some rotary mowers today are powered by gas or petrol. Others are battery-powered.
For homeowners with larger lawns, riding mowers are the best choice.
P for Pruners
Pruners are like scissors but they’re intended to cut thicker stems. This is an ideal tool for propagating plants via cuttings.
For basil plant owners, pruners are great for cutting 4 to 5 inches off of a basil stem with at least 2 leaf nodes. Remove the leaves and re-plant the branch to a pot with soil. Make sure to water them a little bit. After a day or two, successful basil plants will stay upright and grow independently.
Sharpen your pruners regularly to keep them in good working condition.
R for Rakes
Rakes are one of the best garden tool around, especially for yard owners who have tall trees around.
Small rakes with short handles work best for raking leaves from shrubs, while big ones with long handles do great during winter clean-ups.
Rakes with broad head and flexible spikes are good for cleaning large sections of the yard.
Bow rakes are ideal for preparing soil for vegetable planting, raised beds, and gravel covers.
Small hand rakes are perfect for extracting leaves on plant beds while keeping the plants intact and undisturbed.
S for Shovels
Shovels are indispensable garden tools. With so much variety there is, you may be wondering if you have to have all types in your garden shed.
The answer is, you just have to pick the right ones for you. The most important ones to have are the garden shovel and the round tip shovel.
The garden shovel is a multi-purpose tool to have. It comes with a pointed tip and round edges. This tool is great for digging soil and putting back some of the dirt after planting new crops.
The round tip shovel, on the other hand, is a bigger tool with sharper and thicker blade. It’s also used for digging larger holes or areas for planting.
T for Trowels
A trowel does wonders for digging soil, tucking seeds, or smoothing cement on your yard. When choosing one, pick one with a design that reduces hand and wrist fatigue.
A trowel with metric markings is also a good choice so you don’t have to guess on measurements as you dig in your soil.
The usual problem gardeners deal with, when it comes to trowels, is broken handles. Choose a trowel that has a seamless handle-blade design so both ends won’t disintegrate easily.
W for Wheelbarrow
Whether you have a mound of soil or a bountiful harvest, you’ll need a wheelbarrow to transfer them from one point to another.
When shopping for a wheelbarrow, pick one with a modern, two-wheel design with curved edges. This is easier and safer to use, especially for homeowners with children.
As for the material, choose one that’s made of plastic. It’s lightweight and durable too. You can use it for a long time and you don’t even have to worry about rust! As long as it’s safe to use for your produce, it’s a good buy.
You may also want to buy buckets and bags when you go out to buy a wheelbarrow. Purchasing them in one go will allow you lift or transfer more things while you garden.
Gardening is a very productive and healthy hobby. Apart from beautifying your property, it does great wonders to your mind and body too. Because it’s beneficial to both your physical and mental health, you might want to consider adding it to your weekly routine.
Of course, gardening won’t be complete with the essential garden tools you need to achieve your dream yard design.
Different types of garden tools are created for various purposes in the yard. It’s fairly okay if you don’t have a complete set of all the common garden tools around. What’s important is having the right ones when you need it.
Keeping only a few of the best garden tools around that are functional and used frequently is enough to start with. But as you progress on your garden work, you may want to complete the tools for a happier and more satisfying gardening experience.