Christmas is quickly approaching and if you haven’t done so, it is time to think of what gift the gardeners in your life will receive this year.
There are many great tool options for every kind of gardener whether they be young, old, beginner or experienced. How do you know which ones to pick — and what do all of those tools do? Of course, there’s the staples like spades, hoes and shovels, but chances are the gardener in your life already has their fair share of those. This year, look for something different.
You will want to get tools that help make the job easier and don’t strain or hurt your back, hands and knees. Find easy-grip tools, knee savers and compact hoses. Compression gloves help, too, as well as a stand-up trimmer that is lightweight.
Price ranges vary with make, size and company. If you are ready to pay a bit for top quality, you can find tools that will survive the wear and tear of regular heavy use. Most good tools come with a warranty against breakage.
Take a look at a few of these top-tool favorites for gardening, and it may make the choices a little easier to make.
For the Outdoors Gardener
For someone who likes to garden outdoors, there are always a certain set of tools they need. Here are some tools that are handy, but not always first on the mind of gift-givers.
1. Hori-Hori knife. This knife is a traditional Japanese tool used for the digging of Bonsai trees. Hori-Hori is actually Japanese for the words “digging, digging.” The knife has a sharp, straight blade, and can be used for multiple tasks like weeding, planting and cutting roots. It is a light, ergonomic tool, with a blade made of stainless steel or carbon steel.
2. Compost and mulch fork. It is more than just a garden fork. With a long handle and 10 tines strategically placed close together, you can flip and turn mulch or compost easily with this fork. You can also use it to pick up large or awkwardly shaped stones, as well as wood chips and leaves.
3. Ho-Mi. From South Korea, the Ho-Mi is a versatile gardening tool. Ho-Mi means “little ground spear.” It has a sharp, scythe-like curved blade. The Ho-Mi is a multi-task tool. You can use it to dig, weed and transplant seedlings, and also loosen soil around your vegetable plants.
4. Power rake. This tool is a must-have for those with sore backs. It looks similar to the mulch fork, but with a few differences which make it unique. It has 25 arched tines with a handle reaching up to five feet in length. You can spread mulch, rake leaves and rake soil. It can be pushed or pulled with little effort. The design of the curved tines prevents what you are raking from spilling up over the top of the rake.
5. Woodman’s pal. Look like the ultimate woodsman with this US Army tool. It is a sturdy combination of an axe and machete, creating a long blade for cutting, with a hooked tip for clearing and removing roots. It can easily be used for hacking overgrown weeds, trees or other tough-to-clear vegetation.
For the Greenhouse Gardener
For the greenhouse gardener, you should check out a greenhouse fan heater, gardening tool bags and seats, as well as a thermometer and hydrometer. All are handy, and pretty “nifty” to have around.
6. Gardening bags. These bags help prevent stress on your back and knees. They can save wear on your tools as well. Gardening bags can usually be adjusted so you can sit down while you weed the garden, and your tools are always nearby.
7. Fan heaters. Efficiently moves the warm air of the greenhouse around to keep the temperature steady. It also helps control the energy bill. You can use this device all year round as a heater or as a fan.
8. Thermometers and hydrometer. We all know the importance and benefit of a thermometer and hydrometer. They monitor and keep track of both the heat and the humidity. These devices will help you keep your plants away from temperature damage.
Tool Care Tips
When giving tools as gifts, it is always helpful to send some pointers on how to care for the new tool:
- Always clean your tools after you use them. This will keep the tools in the best condition possible.
- Clean any sap off of shears and other blades and spray with WD40 or similar product.
- Use an oil like linseed to rub into wood handles. This will prevent any cracks and keep wood supple.
Gardening is one of the healthiest activities around. You can enjoy it all year round — and having the right tools can make it all the more enjoyable. So if you’ve got some holiday shopping for your green-thumbed friends and family, consider putting a new gardening toy under the tree.
What tools would you add to the list? Share your suggestions in the section below: