Alicia DeVore

Let’s face it. Life can be hard. I’m always looking for ways to simplify my time in the garden so that it continues to bring my heart life and doesn’t get overwhelming.

Here is an extensive list of garden tools and supplies that have helped me to enjoy gardening. It’s time to energize your garden time with top 13 must-have gardening tools.

energize your gardening by adding these 13 tools with rake in the background

Essential Garden Tools Supplies

Gardening is a rewarding and enjoyable hobby, and having the right tools and supplies is crucial for any backyard gardener. Investing in essential gardening tools can significantly impact your gardening experience by enhancing efficiency and ease of work.

High-quality tools save time and energy while tending to your garden, allowing you to focus on other aspects of life. Moreover, proper garden tools contribute to plant health and growth, such as using sharp pruning shears to reduce disease risk and promote healthy growth.

Ergonomically designed garden tools offer physical comfort and safety, minimizing injury risk and making gardening more enjoyable. While quality gardening tools may initially seem expensive, their durability ensures long-term cost-effectiveness as you won’t need to replace them frequently.

Ultimately, using the right garden tools fosters personal satisfaction, boosts confidence, and motivates you to tackle even the most challenging gardening tasks.

toolbox with green lettering that says garden

Essential Digging Tools for Successful Gardening

Gardening can be a rewarding and therapeutic hobby, but having the right garden tool is essential for success. In this guide, we will explore various digging tools that every gardener from beginner to permaculture expert should have in their arsenal, as well new tools such as how to use and maintain them properly.

Types of Gardening Tools

There are numerous gardening tools available for different tasks and purposes.

There are two categories for a garden tool:

  1. Hand-held tools: These are smaller, manually operated tools that are perfect for precise work, small gardens, or container gardening.

  2. Mechanical tools: These are larger, motorized tools designed for more extensive gardens or heavy-duty tasks.

Each category garden hand tools have its own benefits and drawbacks. Hand-held tools are affordable, easy to maneuver, and great for beginners, while mechanical tools can save time and effort, but more expensive tools may require more maintenance and skill.

garden tools with green background

Hand-held Digging Tools

Spades and shovels are an essential garden tool for digging, turning soil, and transplanting plants. The main difference between the two is the shape of their blades. Spades have a flat, rectangular blade, while shovels have a curved, scoop-shaped steel blade throughout.

How to use: Use a spade for edging, cutting through roots, and turning soil. A shovel is better for moving soil, compost, or mulch from one place to another.

Maintenance: Clean the blades after each use to prevent rust,and sharpen them periodically to ensure efficient digging.

Trowels

A trowel is a small, hand-held tool with a pointed, scoop-shaped blade. It’s perfect for either planting seeds, seedlings, bulbs, and small plants or for weeding in tight spaces.

How to use a hand trowel: Hold the trowel like a dagger, with the blade facing downward. Use it to dig small holes or remove weeds from rocky soil.

Maintenance: Clean and dry the trowel after each use and store it in a dry place to prevent rust.

Digging Forks

A digging fork, also known as a garden fork, has sturdy, flat tines that are great for digging holes, breaking up compacted soil, aerating the ground, or turning compost.

How to use: Push the fork into flat surface of the soil using your foot and gently rock it back and forth to loosen the earth.

Maintenance: Clean and dry the fork after each use. Apply a light coat of oil to the tines to prevent rust.

Hand Cultivators

Hand cultivators are designed with sharp, curved tines to break up soil, mix in amendments, or remove weeds.

How to use: Hold the cultivator by its handle and use a raking motion to break up the soil or remove weeds.

Maintenance: Clean the tines after each use and store the cultivator in a dry place.

Essential Pruning Tools for Every Gardener

green garden tools with grass background

Pruning is a crucial practice in gardening that helps maintain the health, appearance, and productivity of plants.

Importance of Pruning

Pruning offers several benefits:

  1. Health: Removing dead, damaged, or diseased branches helps prevent the spread of infections and pests.

  2. Appearance: Shaping plants and trees enhances their aesthetic appeal.

  3. Growth: Pruning encourages new growth and flowering by directing energy to selected branches.

  4. Safety: Removing weak or dangerous branches reduces the risk of property damage or injury.

Basic Pruning Techniques

There are two primary pruning techniques:

  1. Thinning: This involves removing entire branches back to their point of origin on the main trunk or stem. Thinning promotes airflow, reduces weight, and maintains the plant’s natural shape.

  2. Heading: This involves cutting back branches to a bud or lateral branch, encouraging bushier growth and more branching.

Essential Pruning Tools

Hand Pruners

Hand pruners are perfect garden tool for cutting small branches, stems, and twigs up to 1 inch in diameter. There are two types of hand pruners: bypass pruners (with a scissor-like action) and anvil pruners (with a crushing action).

Uses: Ideal for pruning flowers, shrubs, and small trees.

Safety precautions: Wear gloves to protect your hands from cuts and thorns. Always cut away from your body to avoid injury.

Maintenance: Clean the blades after each use and sharpen them periodically. Oil the pivot point and store in a dry place to prevent rust.

Loppers

Loppers have long wooden handles and larger stainless steel blades, making them suitable for cutting branches up to 2 inches in diameter.

Uses: Excellent for pruning small trees, large shrubs, and hard-to-reach branches.

Safety precautions: Ensure a firm grip on the handles while cutting. Keep bystanders at a safe distance when using loppers.

Maintenance: Like hand pruners, clean and sharpen the blades, oil the pivot point, and store in a dry place.

Pole Pruners

Pole pruners are essentially loppers or saws mounted on an extendable pole, allowing you to reach high branches without a ladder as landscaping tools.

Uses: Great tool for pruning tall trees or hard-to-reach branches.

Safety precautions: Stay clear of power lines and maintain a secure footing. Be cautious of falling branches while cutting.

Maintenance: Clean and sharpen the blades, lubricate the metal pivot point, and store in a dry place.

Tool Maintenance

To keep your pruning tools in excellent condition as landscaping tools:

  1. Clean: Remove sap, dirt, and debris after each use.

  2. Sharpen: Regularly sharpen the cutting edges to ensure clean, efficient cuts.

  3. Lubricate: Apply oil to the moving parts to prevent rust and maintain smooth operation.

  4. Store: Keep tools in a dry, organized storage area to prevent damage and prolong their lifespan.

Essential Watering Tools and Equipment for Successful Gardening

Proper watering is crucial for maintaining a healthy and thriving garden.

Watering Can

A watering can is a simple yet essential garden tool for any gardener. It allows for precise watering of individual plants, making it perfect for container gardening, seedlings, or indoor plants.

Usage: Fill the can with water and gently pour it over the base of your plants, ensuring the soil is evenly moistened.

Maintenance and Storage: Rinse the watering can after each use and store it in a dry place, preferably upside down to prevent water accumulation and mosquito breeding.

Garden Hose

A garden hose is a versatile garden tool used for watering larger areas, such as flower beds or vegetable gardens. Hoses come in various lengths, materials, and diameters to accommodate different garden sizes and water pressure requirements.

Usage: Connect the hose to an outdoor faucet and use a spray nozzle or wand attachment to control the water flow and reach.

Maintenance and Storage: Drain the hose and coil it neatly after each use. Store it on a hose reel or hanger to prevent kinks and prolong its lifespan.

Gloves

Gloves are basic tools needed for a garden. Waterproof gardening gloves will protect your hands from moisture and dirt while watering your plants.

Usage: Wear gloves when handling hoses, sprinklers, or other wet equipment.

Maintenance and Storage: Rinse and air-dry gloves after each use, and store them in a cool, dry place.

Specialized Watering Equipment

Timers

Watering timers automate the watering process, ensuring your plants receive the proper amount of water at the right time. Timers can be connected to hoses, sprinklers, or drip irrigation systems.

Usage: Program the timer according to your garden’s watering schedule, taking into consideration factors such as plant type, soil conditions, and climate.

Maintenance and Storage: Replace the timer’s batteries as needed and store it indoors during winter months to protect it from harsh weather conditions.

Products for Automated Watering

Consider investing in smart watering systems that can further automate and simplify the watering process. These products often include features like:

  • Smart Controllers: Connect to Wi-Fi and integrate with weather data to adjust watering schedules based on real-time conditions.

  • Soil Moisture Sensors: Monitor soil moisture levels and communicate with the controller to water only when necessary.

  • Drip Irrigation Systems: Deliver water directly to the plant’s root zone, reducing water waste and promoting efficient absorption.

Essential Watering Spray Nozzles for a Comfortable Gardening Experience

Choosing the right watering spray nozzle can significantly enhance your gardening experience by providing precise water control and coverage.

Key Features to Look for in a Watering Sprayer

  1. Adjustable spray patterns: A nozzle with multiple spray patterns allows you to customize the water flow according to your plants’ needs.

  2. Ergonomic design: A comfortable grip and easy-to-use controls make watering less tiring and more enjoyable.

  3. Durability: Materials like solid brass or heavy-duty plastic ensure the nozzle’s longevity and resistance to wear and tear.

  4. Flow control: A built-in flow control feature allows you to adjust the water pressure for optimal watering.

Different Types of Nozzles

mom and son using a green watering can to water garden.

Adjustable Spray Nozzle

An adjustable spray nozzle offers multiple spray patterns, ranging from a gentle mist to a powerful jet, making it suitable for various gardening tasks.

Benefits: Versatile and ideal for watering delicate seedlings, flower beds, vegetable gardens garden beds, lawns, trees young plants, and shrubs.

Usage Tips: Rotate the nozzle head to switch between different spray patterns. Adjust the water pressure according to your plants’ requirements.

Pistol Grip Nozzle

A pistol grip nozzle features a trigger mechanism that allows for easy control of water flow and pressure.

Benefits: Offers precise water control, making it suitable for various gardening tasks. The more ergonomic handle design reduces hand fatigue during extended watering sessions.

Usage Tips: Squeeze the trigger gently for a light spray or firmly for a stronger jet. Adjust the nozzle tip to change the spray pattern.

Wheelbarrows for Gardening

wheel barrel with tools for the garden on the grass

Having the right wheelbarrow can make gardening tasks much more manageable and efficient.

WORX Aerocart Multifunction Wheelbarrow

Features: The WORX Aerocart is a versatile, 8-in-1 wheelbarrow that can transform into a dolly, extended dolly, bag holder, cylinder holder, rock/plant mover, trailer tote, or hand truck. It has a durable stainless steel bottom construction and flat-free tires, ensuring longevity and low maintenance.

Benefits: The multifunctional design makes it perfect for various gardening tasks. Its ergonomic handles and easy dumping capabilities enhance the gardening experience.

Where to Purchase: Available at major retailers, such as Home Depot, Lowe’s, and Amazon.

Care and Maintenance: Keep the wheelbarrow clean and dry after use. Periodically check for loose bolts and tighten as necessary and store in a garden shed.

Gorilla Carts Heavy-Duty Poly Yard Dump Cart

Features: This heavy-duty cart has a durable, rust-proof poly bed with a large load capacity of up to 1,200 lbs. It features a patented quick release dumping system, making it easy to unload materials. The cart has 13-inch pneumatic tires for smooth movement on various terrains.

Benefits: The large load capacity and easy dumping system make it ideal for heavy-duty gardening tasks. Pneumatic tires ensure good grip and smooth maneuverability on uneven terrain.

Where to Purchase: Available at major retailers, such as Home Depot, Lowe’s, and Amazon.

Care and Maintenance: Clean the poly bed after each use and store the cart in a dry place to prevent rust on the frame.

energize gardening with these 13 must-have gardening tools with tools in green in background

In conclusion, equipping yourself with the right tools can truly transform your gardening experience, making it easier, more efficient, and enjoyable using some of the best gardening tools. By investing in quality equipment tailored to your specific needs, you not only ensure the health and vitality of your plants but also create a more pleasant and rewarding gardening journey.

Grab a few of these useful tools and start a garden with your kids. Check out this post on the benefits of gardening with your kids.

Check out this resource page to find more items that help you with gardening. And if you need one-on-one help with how to energize your gardening time, then book a kickstart consultation with me, Alicia from Create My Garden. To find out what to do to help in your garden in July or other months with a to do list, check out this blog post. Or look at this blog post with more gardening book resources.


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About the Author

Alicia has been teaching her whole life from elementary teacher to workshops for beginning gardeners.  Go HERE to read Alicia's story into gardening from plant killer to pro grower and garden coach.  If you want to send Alicia a quick message, then use her contact page HERE.

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