Spring is closer than you think, and it’s time to start going through gardening tools, replacing what’s broken and purchasing what’s needed. Whether you're just starting out gardening or you’re a seasoned veteran, here's a quick list of ten necessary tools for any gardener.
Garden hose – a hose is indispensable: you will need to water your plants and possibly even your lawn (especially if you’re trying to start one or fill in an area). Hoses can be found anywhere that sells lawn and garden supplies, and you’ll also need a good spray nozzle.
Hand trowel – an absolute necessary for planting in gardens and in containers, digging out weeds, and mixing potting soils; resembles a small shovel. Trowels come in a variety of sizes and styles.
Digger – perfect for digging out plants or weeds with longer roots, like dandelions, it’s a long handle with a forked end. This tool, in its simplicity, will be a workhorse in your garden.
Hand cultivator – useful for removing weeds from smaller areas when a hoe isn't practical, or for "scratching" soil for planting (especially good for small patches in need of grass seed). For large areas in need of "scratching," you may want to check into a similar product with a longer handle.
Spade shovel – a square-headed shovel with a short handle that you’ll use for digging, edging, and removing sod. A strong handle and connection between the handle and the shovel head is a must – you'll spend a little more money on it, but in the long run it'll be worth it.
Round-point shovel – unlike a spade shovel, a round-point shovel has a "scoop" to it, so it’s ideal for moving soil, mulch, peat moss and the like; it is also good for digging into hard soil, because the point will pierce it. Again, a strong connection between handle and head is a necessity.
Garden rake – essential for cleaning up the leaves that will inevitably fall in autumn; also good for raking out gardens in the spring. As with a spade shovel, a good connection between handle and rake head is a must. If you have a lot of leaves to clean up, check out a fan rake with a wider head.
Garden hoe – you’ll use this for weeding, working up soil, or creating rows for planting vegetable seeds. Available in a number of different styles, looks for one that fits your preferred gardening type (flowers or vegetables, for example); you can also look for an ergonomic one if you suffer from back problems.
Garden scissors or small pruners – you'll use these for deadheading, pruning or shaping, and to cut flowers if you plant flower gardens. Good ones can be expensive, but as mentioned with other tools, they will last.
Garden gloves – you'll need something comfortable and close-fitting so you can work with tools and plants, but something durable to stand up to the hours you'll spend in the garden, as well as the sharp sticks and thorns you'll encounter. There are many styles and fabrics available in many price ranges, so your choice will be based on your needs.
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