20 Gardening Tools Every Gardener Must Have

  • By: CarlBroadbent
  • Time to read: 17 min.
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Garden tools are the first investment gardeners make when starting a garden.

It may be tempting to break the bank, trying to buy all the equipment in the gardening section.

Gardening tools gardener must have list
Gardening tools every gardener must have

Do not, because as demanding as gardening seems, you only need a few essential items to get you started.

As long as you start with the necessary implements, you can invest more later if your garden requires them.

Why Are Garden Tools Essential?

Besides making it easy to set up vegetables or flower gardens, garden tools save us the time and physical labor we would undertake in gardening.

Garden tools help you prepare the soil, plant seeds, and take care of your plants through regular weeding between them without ruining their roots.

Moreover, gardening equipment eases the workload and can help turn a gardening hobby into a profitable business.

What Tools Do I Need To Be A Gardener?

Start with simple everyday hand garden tools that will be easy to use, affordable, and readily available in every gardening section of local stores.

To set up your first garden, think about the size of your gardening space, the soil type, and the type of plants you intend to grow.

Must have Tools for gardening
Tools for gardening

If you do not have garden space but want to grow potted plants indoors and around your house, a small hand trowel and a brush are all you need.

The hand trowel will help shift soil around the potted plants and pot new plants.

The brush sweeps away any dirt that spills over the pots as you take care of the plants.

You can use a jug or bottle from your kitchen to water your house plants.

What to Expect? To set up and maintain a large garden, a gardener will require a few more vital garden tools. Starting a new garden or expanding an existing one will be quick and efficient if you have the right equipment.

Whether planting seeds or propagating your vegetables, trees, or flowers, read on to discover the 20 gardening tools every gardener must have.

Important Gardening Tools For The Beginner

1. Gardening Gloves

Hand gloves are a must-have in gardening.

Apart from ensuring our hands and nails are dirt-free, they protect our hands from plant scratches and sores from manual gardening tools.

women's Garden gloves for thorns
Garden gloves for thorns

If you have a cut or open wound, gloves will prevent infection and shield your skin from insect stings. 

Some toxic chemicals in pesticides can cause a skin reaction, and plants contract fungal infections that can bring on diseases to humans if in contact.

Wearing protective gear will help avoid direct contact with plants. 

There are different types of gloves:

  • leather
  • rubber-coated
  • cloth
  • and neoprene gloves

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Choose hand gloves made from sturdy and quality material, are affordable, and offer maximum protection.

2. Gardening Boots

Gardeners spend most of their time on their feet, gardening.

Purchasing a comfortable pair of gardening boots is vital to keep your feet dry and prevent sliding and falling from wet grass and soil.

Moreover, comfort while gardening is necessary, so invest in high-quality and well-fitting gardening boots for everyday wear.

3. Wheelbarrow

Wheelbarrows help complete heavy-lifting tasks in the garden.

Moving soil, heavy planting material, mulch, rocks, large plants, and fertilizers around the garden requires a wheelbarrow.

Get a wheelbarrow that will meet your needs as they come in various designs, sizes, and materials. 

Most gardeners prefer steel wheelbarrows as they can carry a lot of weight.

However, they are heavy and are prone to rusting from moisture.

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Despite plastic wheelbarrows being lightweight and prone to heat damage, they are best for light garden work and mixing wet gardening materials like compost or fertilizers.

4. Garden Hose

Hoses are necessary for ease of watering your plants.

Plug it into your outdoor water outlet and nourish your plants conveniently.

Choosing perfect hose pipe splitter

Purchase a high-quality material garden hose that will last almost ten years.

Pick a flexible medium-sized hose and attach a hose sprayer to avoid overwatering your plants due to high water pressure.

5. Watering Can

Small gardens and outdoor plants do not require much watering.

A watering can is light enough for simple garden maintenance activities.

6. Spade

Spades are excellent for digging deep into the ground, especially to make trenches, as they have a straight and sharp edge.

Transplanting heavy plants that hand trowels will not is effortless using the spade as the blade is long enough.

7. Garden Hoe

Garden hoes are crucial for planting new seedlings and weeding between crops.

Besides clearing a garden for new plants, they help dig up root crops during harvest.

Hoes come in different shapes and designs, so pick one that has a strong blade and handle material for prolonged use.

The length of the handle should be comfortable to work with.

8. Soil pH Meter

Plants require the right amount of soil acidity and alkalinity to grow well.

A soil pH meter measures these levels around the garden.

The device is stuck into the soil, and the acidity and alkaline levels appear on the digital screen.

Other types can tell the soil moisture and light levels.

Depending on your budget and needs, invest in one to get the best out of your soil.

9. Hand Trowel

Hand trowels are essential garden tools for small and large gardens as they can plant and dig up small vegetables and plants.

Potting house plants is faster using this handy tool.

You can easily dig holes to plant your bulb vegetables and flowers, as a hand trowel is a well-loved planter.

Look out for the heavy-weight, solid stainless steel trowels as they do not break easily from regular use.

10. Hand Fork

Hand forks are small garden tools for digging through small rocky garden beds with weeds that do not have deep roots.

Due to their miniature size, they are perfect for digging in between small rows of plants.

11. Dibber

A dibber is an essential hand tool that makes holes during the transplant of young seedlings.

It works well in loose, robust soil and is available in different thicknesses to meet the diameter of your seedlings.

Compared to hand trowels, planting seedlings using a dibber is faster as you do not need to dig a large hole.

12. Shovel

Shovels break and move loose soil, making them suitable for digging around an already tilled garden.

Their lightweight, durable material makes them ideal for regular gardening at an affordable price.  

13. Garden Digging Fork

Garden digging forks are convenient for digging through large plots of rocky ground and compact soil like clay.

It turns new garden soil and helps move large root plants from one place to another.

If you want to turn over your compost and mulch around your plants, the digging fork is the ideal tool.

14. Rake

Rakes are heavy-duty metal garden tools that move, spread, and level soil in the garden.

Additionally, they pick up dry leaves and plants from the garden without disturbing the dirt or grass underneath. 

15. Weed Puller

Unlike standard weeding tools that sometimes only cut off the top of the weeds, weed pullers completely uproot the weeds.

However, they work best when the soil is moist and loose.

Weed pullers have long handles, and they work through a push, twist, and pull motion, making them ideal for hard-to-reach areas.

16. Hand Pruning Shears

Also known as garden shears, they snick, prune and trim plants and flowers.

Gardeners prefer the bypass-style hand pruners as the blades give a close and smooth cut.

These shears work like a standard pair of scissors and are easier to use.

Purchase one that fits well into your hand feels comfortable to use, will meet your needs, and is affordable.

17. Long Handle Pruners

Commonly referred to as loppers, long handle pruners trim tall trees and plants.

Their blades are similar to those of shears, but the difference is in the length of the handles.

One can comfortably cut and prune garden plants without bending over.

18. Gardening Knife

Originating from the Japanese, gardening knives are also known as Hori Hori knives, and they perform a variety of gardening functions.

You can plant, prune and weed using these small garden tools. New and experienced gardeners love them as they are versatile and durable.

19. Garden Sheers

Also known as hedge sheers, garden sheers have long blades to cut through plants easily.

They mainly trim and shape hedges or flower bushes around homes and gardens.

Their long blades allow them to reach high areas for an even trim. 

20. Lawnmower

Luxuriously dense and green lawns are the ultimate measure of success for most gardeners.

Proper maintenance of a large lush lawn requires a lawnmower to quickly and efficiently trim the grass.

Lawnmowers cut grass at even lengths, and gardeners should consider the garden’s size and budget before purchasing.

What Are The Best Garden Power Tools?

Garden power tools require electricity, gasoline, or compressed air to work.

Besides lawnmowers, the best garden power tools a gardener can invest in are the following.

Tiller

Heavy-duty tillers are standard for extensive size gardens above 4000 square feet.

Consider having a tiller if you have many projects covering large tracts of land.

Their benefit is that they are portable and powerful enough to dig through hard soil easily.

String Trimmer

String trimmers are hand-held powered weeders, and trimmers are ideal for areas mowers won’t reach.

using a grass strimmer

With a slight tilt, string trimmers can weed around plants in the garden.

Settle on one depending on the size of your garden, the power source, and the price.

Although the newer models are costly, they are easy to use for every gardening skill level.

Cultivator

Cultivators are excellent for maintaining an existing garden.

They work best on loose soil to create trenches for replanting, weed the garden, and mix compost and fertilizers into the ground by loosening it up.

Leaf Blower

Leaf blowers sometimes replace garden rakes as they quickly pick up dead leaves and plant debris.

Gardeners love them because they suck and collect the dead leaves around the garden in one go, unlike rakes where you will need to pick up the litter manually. 

Frequently Asked Questions About Gardening Tools

What are the differences between a tiller and a cultivator?

Unlike cultivators, which are smaller and ideal for small-scale jobs, tillers can handle heavy jobs.

Tillers are ideal when one needs to start a garden as they can dig through hard soil, whereas cultivators lift the dirt in established gardens.

Tillers can remove an ample space of plants, while cultivators can only cut out a few garden weeds at a time.

Soil mixers types

What garden tools are needed to cultivate?

Cultivating tools are necessary to lift and move around the topsoil in a garden to aerate the earth and remove weeds.

Standard gardening tools primarily useful for cultivating are hand fork, hand trowel, hoe, and garden fork.

What garden tools are the best for weeding?

Weeding your garden is essential because unwanted plants remove all the nutrients from the soil that your plants require to be healthy.

The best tools for weeding any garden size include the gardening knife, dutch hoe, cultivator, and fork.

Garden kneelers and stools

What brands of garden tools do professional gardeners use?

Professional gardeners depend on gardening tools to make their work easier. Investing in high-quality, versatile, and durable equipment saves money in the long run.

It also eases the workload while earning a living. Most professional gardeners purchase brands that have worked well for them over time and those that fellow gardeners highly rate.

Expert gardeners check for sturdy materials like stainless steel and metal to identify superior garden tools.

The brand name of choice should be associated with long-lasting and exceptional expertise in their products.

Popular brand names also provide warranties to cover unexpected structural damages.

Bottom Line

For a gardener to get the most out of their garden, investing in essential garden tools is a must.

Gardening equipment will help you keep your garden appealing and flourishing.

The essential gardening tools for a beginner are a rake, hand trowel, hose or watering can, shears, and a shovel.

If you are just getting started with gardening, these will get you working as you consider investing in more expensive tools. 

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