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Tools don’t make the gardener, but they certainly help. There are a lot of tools out there to choose from, and it can be difficult to sift through what you really need and what might just be nice to have. It’s even harder to choose between different brands and options on the market once you decide what you do need.
We’re here to help. The Gardening Know How team has evaluated the top gardening tools to help you make the best decisions for your personal gardening needs.
In this article, we’ll cover:
When we’re reviewing any products, we hold ourselves to the highest standard of objectivity and thoroughness. When we’re evaluating a set of products, we take a variety of factors into account to make sure we’re recommending the best tools for our readers, including price, value for price, expected life of use, brand trust, customer reviews, and more.
#1 The Best Spade: Fiskars D-Handle Square Garden Spade
When you’re digging in the dirt, you’ll need a spade. Clumps of dirt, packed ground, rocks, and roots are hard to get by with a regular shovel. A spade is useful for seamlessly cutting through the ground as you dig to either unearth existing plants or make room for new ones.
Fiskars gardening spade has a unique square shape that’s sharp enough to cut through ground quickly. This gives you the surface area of a traditional shovel with the digging power of a spade.
- Extra-large D-handle — You can grip this spade with two hands.
- Steel blade and shaft — Quality welding and materials ensures this product will last.
- Specs — The blade clocks in at 14-gauges, and the shaft clocks in at 18-gauges.
- Lifetime warranty — If you have any issues, you can reach out to Fiskars for a repair or replacement.
The Fiskars spade has earned 4.8 stars out of 376 customer ratings on Amazon. On May 25, 2014, Sheryl K said:
Admittedly I was skeptical about this product or any shovel that promised to be SO easy doing manual work. After all, why not just purchase an electric edger that could do the same thing in less time? Here’s the amazing part: this edger does the job with LESS EFFORT, due to being ergonomically correct, jumping on it and demanding more from the blade itself, which makes the actual manual labor SO much easier!! I couldn’t believe it!! I am not a lawn junkie so doing things like edging is new. I truly had no idea how easy it would be!! I have enjoyed the use of this shovel so much that I am now edging other areas of my yard because it is THAT easy and fun. An excellent, strong, sturdy product that I will enjoy for years to come!!
#2 The Best Pruners: Gonicc Professional Premium Titanium Pruning Shears
Pruning shears are essential for shaping bushes and plants, as well as removing dead or dying limbs that might be stunting your plants growth. When you’re looking for shears, you’ll want something sharp, easy to grip, and big enough for the plants you’re looking to prune.
These pruning shears made by Gonicc are long lasting, and made with premium quality materials so they last.
- Handles — Made with high-quality aluminum and wrapped with a layer of PVC, making them light, soft, and comfortable to use.
- Non-slip grip — Ergonomically designed so they fit comfortably in the palm of your hand and stay there.
- Blade — Made with ultra-fine polishing technology, and a teflon, or titanium coating to prevent tree pulp adhesion caused by rust on the blades.
- Power — These pruners can cut up to a ¾-inch diameter-size tree branch.
These top-notch pruning shears have earned 4.5 stars out of 1,957 customer ratings on Amazon. On July 2, 2019, Brandon said:
This is a case of you get what you pay for! There are lots of other inexpensive pruners out there. These hands down are the best ones I have owned!!
Very comfortable grip very easy to use. These come with an extra spring for keeping the pruners open, I’m not totally sure why other than the possibility of rusting if they get wet. If one thing needed improvement it would be the locking mechanism, it functions as it should but it’s a little difficult to use. Overall yes I would buy these again appear to be very high quality!
#3 The Best Garden Rake: Gardenite Expanding Metal Rake
Like all things, gardens have the tendency to get messy. Fall leaves, dropping seeds, and branches that have fallen after a storm are just some examples of how your garden can fall into chaos quickly.
If you’re looking to stay on top of these events and ensure your garden is pristine, you’ll need a high-quality rake to remove any offending materials. This Gardenite rake is adjustable and durable, with a wide mouth to catch any fallen items.
- Length —This rake is an impressive 63 inches long, whereas most hover around 48 inches.
- Head — An adjustable head expands from seven to 22 inches so you can rake in small areas as well as cover a wide amount of ground.
- Handle — Coated in zinc to prevent rust, this rake’s handle is about ¾-inch wide for easy gripping.
- Weight — Lightweight and easy to carry.
- Customer satisfaction guarantee — You can reach out to Gardenite if you’re unhappy with your purchase.
This rake has earned 4.6 stars out of 973 customer ratings on Amazon. On June 27, 2018, Deborah S. said:
This rake is great! I have been wanting something that would move light items like leaves and sticks without trying to dig up roots or move boulders (the way my garden and construction rakes do) but all the leaf rakes I’ve tried are either plastic or flimsy stamped out metal that bends or breaks. This has solidly made tines that give exactly as necessary but don’t distort or break. Plus the handle is an adequate length for both my husband and I (we’re tall) so we don’t have to bend as much. My only complaint — and it is minor — is that when adjusting the rake for narrow spaces, it makes the handle shorter. I’m not sure how this can be avoided, but future designs might want to incorporate an adjustment of width that doesn’t automatically adjust the length also. I also like that it is lightweight because with almost 7 acres of our property to keep trimmed (the rest is wild) it’s no fun to drag heavy tools around all day!
#4 The Best Gardening Gloves: Olson Deepak Leather Gardening Gloves
There are a lot of prickly things in a garden, and they’re often unexpected, not to mention dirt and wet ground that will get your hands messy fast. You’ll need a high-quality pair of gardening gloves to make your gardening experience as smooth as possible.
These gloves by Olsen Deepak are made to be waterproof, comfortable, and flexible.
- Materials — These gloves are made with 1.2mm thickness of 100% cowhide, making them soft, oil resistant, and puncture resistant.
- Reinforced palm and elastic wrist — These help secure your grip and protect your skin by keeping dirt and debris out of the glove.
- No lining — Lining isn’t necessary for these gloves which are naturally breathable and sweat-absorbent.
These sturdy gloves have received 4.8 stars out of 117 customer ratings on Amazon. On October 27, 2019, Janet Steinman said:
I worked construction for 31 years and have went through 100s of pairs of gloves. These are the best quality for the $. Heavy leather, good stitching soft and pliable.
#5 The Best Garden Knife: Truly Garden Hori Hori Garden Knife
While pruners are great for trimming plants, gardening knives are a great tool when you need a little more precision. They’re helpful when you’re looking to pull up grass or turf, dig weeds out of narrow spaces, or loosen up roots around plants.
This garden knife sold by Truly Garden is a high-quality, durable garden knife that’s easy to grip.
Key features include:
- Blade — Extra-sharp, serrated, and flattened for 7-inches of blade.
- Manufacturing — Made with stainless steel and a full tang handle for extra strength.
- Sheath — A nylon sheath with a sharpening stone pocket protects the blade.
- Packaging — Manufactured with eco-friendly packaging.
- Warranty — Your knife is covered for five years.
This extra-sharp knife has earned 4.8 stars out of 1,347 customer ratings on Amazon. On April 1, 2018, an Amazon customer said:
I love this gardening tool. I never knew how much I needed it! This is now my number one weapon to use in my battle with a free range, out of control landscaping nightmare. One can have too much of a good thing! I have inherited a landscape with one specimen of every known plant in the entire northern hemisphere left to grow wild.
Now I bravely draw the Hori Hori Garden Knife from its sheath and enter the yard with new found courage. In my battle I have destroyed all of our kitchen knives, my hoe and cultivator tiller and the pick axe but this yard has finally met its match!
Things to Consider When Buying Gardening Tools
There are a few factors that you should take into consideration before making your final purchase on gardening tools.
What type of plants do you currently have?
It could be you have thicker bushes to take care of, or flowers that need frequent pruning. This will factor into your purchasing decision.
What type of projects are you looking to complete?
You may be more interested in maintaining the plants you have than you are in planting new ones. This will impact which products you need.
What’s the weather like near you?
If you live in a climate where there’s a full rotation of seasons, you’ll likely need different gardening tools than in a more consistent climate.
How often do you garden?
We’ve pretty much only covered the basic tools here, but whether or not you garden frequently will weigh in your decision about which gardening tools are right for you.