Each spring I like to take a good look at my garden tools and see if anything needs to be repaired or replaced. Every year, I buy new gloves (usually a whole pack of them) since most just don’t hold up to washing. I sharpen any pruners, replace inexpensive scissors, and tighten handles on shovels and rakes. I also like to check my garden hose nozzles; some leaks can be fixed with washers while others need to be replaced entirely. As I complete these annual chores, I always notice that there are a few garden tools that have been with me for years, while others are newer but became instant favorites. Everyone’s preferred tools will vary, of course, depending on the kind of gardening they do and the types of soil they have. For me, though, these five tools are my consistent go-to choices.
A.M. Leonard Cape Cod Weeder. This garden tool has made my list every year for as long as I can remember. No other tool rips through tough weed roots and loosens soil so easily. It comes with a lifetime warranty (not that you’re likely to need it).
Gilmour Super-Duty Thumb Control Nozzle. As long as it doesn’t leak, I look for two things in a garden hose nozzle. One: It needs to be easy to hold. This sprayer passes the test due to the fireman’s style control. No need to hold down a sprayer handle. Two: It needs settings that are actually useful in the garden. This nozzle offers a setting called “Garden” which is like a perfect springtime rain shower – not too hard, not too misty, and with a perfect radius of water.
Fiskars 28 Inch Bypass Lopper. Here’s another garden tool that makes my list year after year. I’m consistently impressed with its ability to cut through the thickest branches with ease. Aside from the occasional sharpening, it requires no maintenance to do the job every time.
Fiskars Softouch Micro-Tip Pruning Snip. From big and tough to small and delicate: These small pruning snips are great for dead-heading. The precision tips keep you from accidentally snipping off buds and blooms you want to keep. They’re small enough to slip in a pocket too (be sure to keep the protective cover on).
Fiskars FiberComp Trowel. Yet another Fiskars tool on the list? There’s a reason they’re so popular with gardeners. This inexpensive trowel is my favorite for working with potting soil or loose soil in the garden. It’s not ideal for heavy clay soils, but it’s nice to have an inexpensive tool that won’t rust to keep with my potting bench.
These garden tools have earned their place in my shed, but I’m always trying out something new. This year, I plan to give these Garden Genie Gloves a go. I’m intrigued by the built-in “claws” on the right hand. When it comes down to it, I do most of my planting (of smaller plants at least) with my hands, so why not make the process a little easier on my fingers and nails? It remains to be seen if these gloves will make my list of favorite garden tools in years to come, but I’m looking forward to finding out!