A few months ago, I was sick of the garden envy I felt every time I drove through my neighborhood. So, I went to the store, bought a bunch of plants and soil to build my very own garden. After I lugged all of my newly purchased flowers into my yard and placed them exactly where I wanted them, I realized I'd made a huge mistake: I forgot to buy garden equipment. That day I learned there is no garden building when one has no garden equipment. Luckily, figuring out what I needed to start my garden was easy!
However, knowing the necessary garden equipment to purchase is half the battle. Once you have it, you will want to know how to care for your tools correctly. After all, you don’t want to be purchasing the same garden equipment year after year. If you buy the right equipment and keep it properly maintained, your tools could last for decades.
Buy Equipment You Feel Comfortable Using
Take time while shopping for this list of necessary garden equipment. If you are serious about this gardening thing, then you will be spending a lot of time in the yard. So pick garden tools that you feel comfortable using time and time again.
Make your way to gardening shops and home improvement shops to find the highest quality tools. Look for garden tools with sturdy, cushioned handles. These are more likely to stay intact and not hurt your hands when you use them. When you are pursuing the aisles at the store, pick up the tools and mimic the motions you will make while in your garden. How does the tool feel? If it feels unnatural or hurts your hands when you are simply imitating, it will be worse during the actual tasks.
For the handles, look for D-shape handles on short-shafted tools such as digging forks and shovels as they are much more comfortable on the wrists.
What Garden Equipment to Buy
Now that you know how to shop let's look at the garden equipment that you will want to purchase.
One of the most critical garden tools that every beginner gardener should have is a dependable pair of garden gloves. Choosing the proper gloves is a very important decision. Not only will you be digging and planting with your hands but you will also be handling tools for long periods of time. So you need gloves that will keep you productive and safe.
There are many variations of garden gloves made of several different types of fabric. Each fabric has its benefits. If you are planning on doing a lot of heavy lifting or more dangerous jobs like pruning rose bushes then leather gloves may be best. For jobs requiring a lot of shoveling or raking, use gloves that have a rubber grip in the palm and under the fingers.
If you are planning on focusing on lighter gardening, then a lightweight and breathable fabric like cotton might do the trick. If you are planning on working in damp soil or colder weather then rubber gloves are another great option. Other types of garden gloves include those made out of spandex or inexpensive plastic disposable garden gloves that you can throw away after each use. It is not only about having the right gloves for the proper conditions. You also want gloves that are comfortable and that you can work in for long periods of time.
Just like when buying your garden tools, take some time in the store to try on the gloves (if the store allows you) to see how they fit before committing to a purchase. Also, make sure you follow the instructions on how to wash them so you can love your gloves for a long time.
A hand trowel is a small shovel tool that is ideal for bedding plants in gardens, flower beds, pots and window boxes. It is the principal piece of garden equipment for just about any job.
When choosing the proper hand trowel, consider the tasks at hand and the best grip to pair with these tasks. If you plan on using a trowel for planting and digging, then you want one with a sturdy handle. It is all about being effective but staying safe. If you plan on working with your trowel often, get one with a comfortable grip and one that is lighter in weight.
There are many different types of hand trowels. The list includes everything from trowels for potting and digging to weeding and those designed to cut through dirt and roots for the planting of new seeds. Pick your hand trowel correctly and have a piece of garden equipment that will be your best gardening friend.
Anyone needing to complete their beginner garden equipment collection needs a good garden hoe. This tool is ideal for breaking up the tough soil and removing weeds. If you have a medium to large sized garden, then you will want a larger hoe with a wider base. For work in flower gardens, then a smaller how with a more delicate blade will be needed.
When shopping at the store for a garden hoe, pick up a few and imitate some of the motions you will make while in your garden. Make sure that the hoe you choose has a sturdy handle and solid grip that you will feel comfortable using and will give you the leverage you need.
Also known as hand pruners, clippers, or secateurs, shears are used to shape and trim plants, prune out damaged and dead foliage, and cut back perennials among many other tasks. Shears and similar pruning tools come in a variety of styles depending on what you plan on using them. As one of the most instrumental pieces of garden equipment, it is possible that you will end up having several pairs of shears.
For those looking for the most multifaceted pair of shears, consider the bypass variety. These are the common shears that have two curved blades that move past each other. This type is somewhat harder on the hands but using them will cause the least amount of damage to living plants.
Then you have the anvil pruners. These have flat blades that cut straight creating a motion similar to a knife on a cutting board. These are often larger than bypass shears but are much easier to use on dead plants.
If you are planning on having a decent sized garden, then a wheelbarrow is a necessary piece of garden equipment. Wheelbarrows are one of the easiest ways to both travel through dirt and transfer soil, compost, and leaves from place to place. You can also use a wheelbarrow to transport new seedlings to your garden bed.
When it comes to digging and moving dirt, nothing works better than a shovel. The shovel is the quintessential piece of garden equipment. As with the other tools, there is a couple of different type of shovels on the market. However, for your gardening needs, your best bet is a round-point shovel.
A long-handled, round-point shovel is the most commonly used shovel. It is a multipurpose piece of garden equipment. It is an excellent tool for first starting your garden. Its ability to transplant, trench and move dirt and plant life makes it a must-have.
You can dig and transplant all you want, but if your plants don’t get watered, then you’re missing the point. Hence, an essential piece of garden equipment is a dependable water hose.
The hose you choose depends on the size of your garden and the frequency of which you hope to water. The most common is the patio hose which attaches to the kitchen sink or an outside faucet. You then spray water out of the other end of the hose or through a hose attachment.
For a hose that you can set and forget, choose a flat, soaker, or leaky hose. These are hoses that you can lay out in the garden. When turned on, the water sweats out along the entire length of the hose, keeping your plants consistently wet and nurtured.
If you plan to have a successful garden, then one of your first purchases of garden equipment should be a hand rake. Also known as a hand cultivator, this three-pronged hand-held device is ideal for breaking up solid dirt and turning the soil for your new and current plants. Many gardeners also use the hand rake as an easy method to dig out weeds. The hand rake is a great took for gardens and smaller flower beds.
Maintaining Your Garden Equipment
You don’t want to spend a fortune on these basic tools, but you also don’t want to be cheap just to see them fall apart right off the bat. Avoid cheap-looking plastic tools that will fall apart at the first sign of difficulty. Instead, look for tools with wooden or metal coated handles that can withstand some of your more arduous gardening tasks.
Proper tool storage is also crucial. For your longer garden equipment, install hooks and hang these tools by the handles. Doing so will keep the blades off the ground and avoid dulling the sharp edges. Keep the short handled tools in a garden bag. Putting them in the bag will keep them safe. It will also keep your tools together both in storage and while you are out gardening.
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You can keep all of your tools intact and usable throughout the years by cleaning them off regularly and removing any dust that accrues over time. For sharp tools, take a metal file and sharpen the edges when they become dull.
A Fine Start to Any Gardening Collection
If you are serious about gardening, then be sure to pick up these great pieces of garden equipment. They are sure to make your gardening project easier and a lot more fun as well.
As you grow your garden and gain more experience, then you can start looking at more advanced gardening tools. In the meantime, this collection is exactly what you need to get the flowers blooming and the vegetables growing.