We recommend a few important guidelines when buying gardening hand tools. First, it is important to buy sturdy, quality garden tools. Good tools can last the better part of a lifetime if taken care of. Second, only buy the essential tools. Many new gardeners waste money on hardware they do not need. Finally, it is very important to find tools that are comfortable and a good fit for you. The following gardening tools are the basic necessities for any garden.
This staple vegetable garden tool is ideal for prying up rooted vegetables such as potatoes and onions. The best garden forks are usually forged, and contain 4 sturdy tines. A garden fork is the best garden tool to use for soil preparation because it does not overwork the soil like tilling does. Use it if you have the time!
A garden spade/garden shovel is used for edging, shovelling soil/compost, prying up weeds, digging holes, and lifting plants. The best shovel for the vegetable garden is the short shovel with a "D" handle and forged blade. This tool will be used for a lot of prying, so be sure to purchase a garden shovel with a strong handle. Note: The long handled construction shovels/spades are not ideal in the garden, unless you are quite tall.
Garden hoes are a great vegtable garden tool for trenching, cutting off weeds, and hilling (piling soil around plants such as potatoes). A wood-handled garden hoe may feel better on the hands, and will be more flexible.
A garden rake is a vegetable garden tool that has short, thick teeth is good for levelling soil and gathering weeds. This important garden tool may not necessarily be used only in the garden, as it is very useful around the yard in general.
A garden trowel is a must-have for transplanting, digging small holes, weeding and mixing soil with fertilizer. A garden trowel is lightest if made from aluminum. The strongest garden trowels are made from steel. A garden trowel may be one of the most used garden tools, so it is important to find one that is strong, durable and comfortable to hold.
We strongly encourage that people purchase vegetable gardening tools that feel comfortable and are durable. The investment is well worth the extra cost. Cheap tools will frustrate you in the garden if they continuously break.