Buying Gardening Tools – Tips

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Different kinds of gardens require different kinds of garden tools. A lot of tools are merely sales gimmicks whereas others are essentials to any gardener.

Here is some gardening tools advice covering the most popular, best gardening tools – to assist you in making good choices.

Best Gardening Tools

Consider What Your Requirements Are

Do you have small garden or a large one? A small garden will not require the same large equipment that would be of use in an extensive one. If you have a very small or container garden, then you will probably be able to get away with just buying some hand gardening tools. These are great for getting in close around plants and are very easy to manage. They also usually cost a lot less. For example, I have been known to purchase “childrens” gardening tools – for my own use!

Another point to consider is who does most of the gardening? Some tools are just too heavy for use by women. Tools will have different sized handles, and some will be long or short. So make sure to choose the right tools that will be easy for the person who will be using them the most.

Shovels & Spades

A shovel has a scoop blade and is best used to move around dirt and garden soil. It is the best tool for digging large areas.

A spade is similar to a shovel – the only difference is that a spade has a flat blade. This is great for cutting edges, digging and dividing plants. The edge of a spade should be kept sharpened for clean and efficient cutting will cause the least amount of damage to plants. These are a basic garden necessity and usually cost from $30 – $50.

When buying shovels and spades, consider what it’s main use will be and this will determine the size of the blade, as they come in a large range of sizes.

Shovel and Spade


Gardening Forks

Forks are used for turning and aerating compost and breaking up lumps of soil. The cheaper ones are often not strong enough for heavy soil, so when buying one, make sure to choose one that is sturdy. Here is where quality over-rides price.. A good quality gardening fork will usually cost around $30 – $100.

You may also like a small hand fork, for when you are working around established plants by hand, or just need to aerate a small area of the garden. They come in very handy for raised garden beds and indoor gardens.

Gardening Forks

Secateurs and Trimmers

When you buy secateurs make sure the blade always stays sharp – to avoid damaging the plant. Look for models that have blades that can be sharpened or replaced, models with tension control and in a size that best fit your hands.

Also, consider the shape of the actual blade. I personally prefer a curved blade on my own secateurs. This means the branch or stem you are trimming is much less likely to slide out from between the blades when being cut. A good set of secateurs usually cost around $50 – $130.


Hedge trimmers or shears are handy – but only if you have a hedge, or plan on growing one. Some hedge trimmers have curved blades to stop branches from sliding out when cut.

A pruning saw is used for pruning trees and larger shrubs, while secateurs are for plants like roses. Pruning saws have a narrow curved blade that fits between stems or branches and easily and cuts them as you pull the saw backwards. They are approximately $27- $55.

Hoes and Rakes

A chipping hoe is a handy tool for getting rid of small weeds. The Dutch or push-hoe is slightly more user-friendly as the action required to use it does not jar the neck and shoulder quite so much.

Garden Hoes

A rake is also a basic requirement for the garden. The strong rake with the flat head and sharp metal prongs is used for smoothing a garden bed and getting out the last of the bumps and weeds. The plastic rake is used to gather leaves and grass clippings only.


WheelbarrowsPretty much a necessity for every single gardener, a wheelbarrow just makes moving things around in your garden a lot easier for you.

Wheelbarrows come in a range of styles and shapes. Make sure to choose one that is light and easy to handle – but also solid enough for heavy jobs – if you need that.

Consider the materials, too. A solid steel wheelbarrow will last for a very long time if cared for, but it may be far too heavy for ease of use for a female.

Some wheelbarrows have pump-up tyres and other have solid wheels, if your’s will have a tyre – then make sure you own a tyre pump to keep it full of air.

Cost Of Gardening Tools

Gardening tools don’t have to be expensive, but remember that there is a balance between a cheap price and quality that will last. You need to make sure that the materials your gardening tools are made from will withstand the use you are going to subject them to over the life of your garden. Flea markets and garage sales can be excellent places to pick up great tool bargain.

The types and quality of equipment you use to take care of your plants not only has an effect on your plants’ health, but on your own, too. Defective tools could cause damage to your plants, but it is worse if they are so uncomfortable to use that they give you blisters or a bad back.

To avoid this, look for the gardening equipment that will do the best job for your type of gardening. With power tools, they must have the right amount of power to be energy efficient – while also being able to do the job without causing you any more strain than necessary.

Do You Have Advice For Tool Buyers?

If so, then would you please care to share your advice and tips for our readers below in the comments …


  1. Lillian August 8, 2014
  2. Abélia August 9, 2016
  3. Allcotthire August 19, 2016
  4. Shawn Michaels January 20, 2017
  5. GYM June 28, 2017
  6. Abraham Johnson January 30, 2020

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