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While 2020 was an incredibly difficult year worldwide, it has not been without a few silver linings; indeed, many found pleasure in activities either long forgotten or newly discovered. It was a year to remember for gardening. Old hands finally had as much time at home as they needed. For others, gardening was a 2020 discovery, or rediscovery. When public health orders restricted their usual activities, some new gardeners became captivated by the pleasure of working with their hands and creating beauty in their own yard. Others acquired an awareness of the advantages of growing their own food when supply chains became unpredictable and grocery shopping unpleasant.
How better to celebrate for yourself or a loved one than with the gift of an essential high-quality tool, or maybe a luxe tool that your gardening loved ones might never afford for themselves?
For the holidays and year-round, GardenZeus has prepared this special guide to the most important garden tools, as well as suggestions for gardener bliss in tool form and nice-to-haves.
A quality, lightweight, sharp pair of garden scissors may be the single most-important garden tool for both vegetable and flower gardening, useful for everything from thinning and weeding to deadheading and harvesting. Easy to tuck into an apron or pocket, these scissors are an excellent combination of quality, versatility, and value for the price.
It’s hard to beat the original Felco 2 pruner, but the Felco 11 does it with a replaceable blade. Few pruners match Felco for ease of use, quality, comfort, and durability. A well-cared-for Felco 11 Pruner can last a lifetime although industrious gardeners may go through a few blades. Use it for everything from deadheading lavender and perennials to pruning fruit trees and roses to harvesting veggies with tough stems.
Any Felco pruner is a fine combination of essential and deluxe. Felco 7 is the modern, ergonomic model recommended for larger hands and professionals who want maximum cutting capacity. Felco 6 is the model for those with small/medium hands or who want a lighter tool.
A handsaw takes over where the pruners end. Use a handsaw for stems larger than about half an inch in diameter. A folding handsaw reduces accidental contact and provides for safe storage. Try this high-quality folding handsaw from A. M Leonard.
A garden knife or soil knife is a sometimes-overlooked basic garden tool. Try it; you’ll like it. After a week or two you may wonder how you ever gardened without it.
Use a gardening knife for cutting through surface roots, loosening soil in pots or small spaces, and weeding. It’s much more effective and versatile than a trowel for basic digging, planting, and transplanting whether for cutting small furrows or rows for seeds or efficient planting of starts. You’ll find more miscellaneous uses than almost any other garden tool from opening bags of soil amendments to soil sampling and root pruning. This excellent gardening knife from A. M. Leonard has measurements on the blade, which allow you to plant your bulbs and garlic at the correct depth.
This quality A. M. Leonard trowel with ergonomic handle is designed for easy, comfortable planting and digging.
Did we say scissors were the most important garden tool? Correct that to shovel. There is no comparison for gardening comfort and enjoyment between a cheap shovel versus a quality shovel, and this is apparent with a thousand different everyday gardening tasks. If there’s a single stand-out tool that gardeners envy for quality but won’t invest in for themselves, it’s probably a shovel.
You’ll need one for sweeping hardscape such as patio, deck, or garage. Despite possible appearances to the contrary, a broom holds its own as a candidate for the highest technology available for cleaning up around a garden, at least as compared to a blower. With a broom you avoid the pollution, use no gasoline or electricity, enjoy more time outdoors, get exercise, and eliminate the noise.
See broom above. Combine with broom for civilized cleanup.
It’s hard to beat a traditional sturdy (but heavy) hose, and such hoses may be hard to find. This Dramm model fits the bill and includes a lifetime guarantee.
Expandable hoses have their place. They’re lightweight and easy to use but less durable. Try this model if you don’t want to muscle a heavy hose around.
The right nozzle can turn a hose into many different tools. Skip the traditional “gun” style nozzle, which eventually produces angst and wrist or hand pain from the tight grip. This Dramm model allows you to rotate the head to select the desired water stream and to flip the switch to turn on the water.
And for gardeners who prefer a brass nozzle, this Dramm model requires twisting but no tense gripping.
This sun hat will keep you cool in summer, dry on misty mornings, and safe from UV rays from your scalp to your neck (or whatever portion you want to protect).
Garden gloves are indispensable, as much for sun protection as from thorns, twigs, manure, and bugs. If you prune anything with thorns or dense woody perennials, you will want long garden gloves or gauntlets.
And the pruning gauntlets:
The Roo Garden Apron is endlessly adjustable and saves the tool-caused tears and holes in your gardening pants and pockets. It’s useful for everything from carrying freshly harvested veggies and fruits in its large “roo pouch” (that’s as in kangaroo) to holding your Felco pruners and Botanical Interests seed packets. And your phone. When you are done harvesting, just unhook the pouch and let your harvest cascade gently into your sink for washing. The Roo Garden Apron is washable. Select from many great colors.
Indispensable if you trim hedges.
Many gardeners tackle virtually all their garden cutting with a combination of the pruner and the handsaw. Others prefer using the loppers for jobs that are too big for pruners.
Use this lightweight workhorse to collect garden clippings, for watering plants, or toting your preferred garden tools and goodies. Choose from a selection of fun colors and different sizes.
Other articles with holiday interest:
Poinsettias: Tips, Care and Fun Facts for the Holidays
Indoor and Potted Plants for the Holiday Season
A Holiday Kiss Under the…Holly?: Mistletoe for The California Holidays, Part 1 of 3
A Holiday Kiss Under the…Tree-Killing Parasite?: Mistletoe for The California Holidays, Part 2 of 3
Super-Secret Trick to Evade a Kiss Under the Mistletoe: Mistletoe for The California Holidays, Part 3 of 3
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