Gerrie
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WHAT'S YOUR MOST INDISPENSABLE GARDEN TOOL?

I love, love , love my long poled triangular hoe. It's label has been gone for some time, due to it's heavy usage and my forgetfullnes in leaving it outside but it is steel or stainless and has a small triangular head about 3 1/2 by 5 or 6 inches with serrated blades along the sides. I can reach into hard to reach places and it's small enough head insures that I won't destroy the plants nearby. It's also good for wacking broadleaf weeds when I don't feel like bending. The pole is at least five feet long but it's light weight enough to handle easily.
The spiritual life is first of all a LIFE, it is meant to be lived-Thomas Merton

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rainbowgardener
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trake

Given that I'm a small scale gardener and do a lot in raised beds, I love my trake. Trake = trowel-rake. It has a pointed trowel on one end, 18" or so of solid steel handle, with some padding and finger grips, and a little mini rake/fork on the other end, with 4 solid steel tines. The long and very solid handle gives you plenty of leverage and it can be used for all kinds of tasks.

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Kisal
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As I grow older, I'm not quite as strong as I once was. I find it difficult to lift a standard shovel full of the heavy clay soil that makes up my yard. Therefore, my "lady's shovel" has become one of my favorite yard tools. :)
"Isn't it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?" - Douglas Adams

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freedhardwoods
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I use a garden rake and hoe some, but if I didn't have my Troybilt tiller, I wouldn't be able to raise the garden that I do.

pepper4
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Being totally new at this and learning I would say My most indispensible garden tool would be this forum. Thanks everyone :D
Bambi

Gerrie
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I'm going to TRY to post a picture here. No laughing! :oops:
The spiritual life is first of all a LIFE, it is meant to be lived-Thomas Merton

Gerrie
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OK, how do I do it? I have pix uploaded on 'my pictures, but can't seem to figure out how to move them here. BTW Rainbow, I'd love to see that tool.
The spiritual life is first of all a LIFE, it is meant to be lived-Thomas Merton

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Earl K
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Im also a small scale gardener,Also 90 % container planting.It would have to be my watering can.Which fits perfect into my rain barrell :D
Florida porchgrown veggies
USDA zone 9

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Kisal
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Gerrie wrote:OK, how do I do it? I have pix uploaded on 'my pictures, but can't seem to figure out how to move them here. BTW Rainbow, I'd love to see that tool.

See our Webmaster's posts:

Tips & Suggestions for New Members
"Isn't it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?" - Douglas Adams

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hendi_alex
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It really depends upon the task and the kind of area being worked, but one tool does seem to get into my hands more often than any other except perhaps for the standard round bladed shovel is this. Don't know its name but is now generally my hoe/weeder of choice.

Image

My previous favorite was the triangle shaped hoe.
Image

For an extra tough grassy spot.
Image

And for a large area of young annual weeds, the action hoe or hula hoe type of tool.
Image
Last edited by hendi_alex on Sun Jul 19, 2009 11:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Eclectic gardening style, drawing from 45 years of interest and experience. Mostly plant in raised beds and containers primarily using intensive gardening techniques.
Alex

reptile dude007
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My small tiller.

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tomf
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My most useful tools are the tractor and the Sthil weed eater . Sthil tools work the best IMHO. I have a few of the chain saws they make also. I posted all the attachments for it in this photo. The tractor is my fav tool, I have a 5 foot tiller and brush hog for it. You can see my walk behind tiller in the back ground it is a big one, I have a smaller walk be hind too, for the real big jobs i like to use the tractor.

Image

Gerrie
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Whoa, Tom, that's a lot of horsepower-can't let my hubby see that, he wants one too. We also like Stihl tools, have chain saw and pole trimmer and weed eater from them, their service is great.

Ok here goes with the image thing-no laughing, please.

Image

Image
The spiritual life is first of all a LIFE, it is meant to be lived-Thomas Merton

Gerrie
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dagnabit !!
The spiritual life is first of all a LIFE, it is meant to be lived-Thomas Merton

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Kisal
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I fixed it, because I have a couple of those hoes. They're my very favorite tools, after my little shovel! :D

Take a look at our Webmaster's threads here, and you'll find instructions for posting pictures. You just chose the wrong code over at photobucket. ;)
"Isn't it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?" - Douglas Adams

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Sharon Marie
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My favorite garden tool is my watering can. I know. It's simple - but I love it. It's an old plastic one I've had forever. I prefer to use the watering can over the hose. It gives me more time to stare at my beauties.
Reduce - Reuse - Recycle.
Zone 6A - Jeffersonville, Indiana

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gone cuttin
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It would have to be the broadfork. I have a Mantis but now find that I only use it for edging the lawn. We expanded the walking onion bed and used the broadfork only once to prepare the soil. Now the new little ones are 3-5" tall and very dark green.

It is a 7 tine because it fits perfectly down the beds, work the ground in the beds once in the spring and good to go for the whole year. Very few weeds, ground stays loose and really holds the water.
McClure Ranch

Gerrie
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First of all THANK YOU, KISAL for doing that. I could've tried a dozen times and still gotten it wrong. I'll spend more time reading and trying it out.

EarlK and Sharon Marie-you both like watering cans, so do I, I have two old tin ones that came with the place when we bought it and I use them a lot, they're so gentle on the plants.

Gone Cutting, what's a broadfork? Is it one of those things you step on to drive it inot the ground, just loosen it up a bit and pull it out again? If you can post a pic. that'd be great.
The spiritual life is first of all a LIFE, it is meant to be lived-Thomas Merton

jamesy
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Hahahaha , i had a feeling we had the same Ho Gerrie when i read your description,had to go get it for a pic , mine was kind of old and rusty so i cleaned it up and painted it.
I also found some old tin watering cans i like , same deal , came with the property , loads of real old tools.
My favorite has to be the old long pitchfork , i use it instead of the power tiller to turn the ground each year.Ill need to get a pic of that , i don't think they make those anymore..pretty cool.

Image

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rootsy
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I have quite a few indispensible tools... Of all sizes. I couldn't imagine operating at the size I am without some of the equipment I have. I could but it'd take me 20X as long at a minimum and the results would be less than stellar.

BTW, the hoe blade with the traingular serrated edges is nothing but a sickle bar knife (if you ever break it... it is easily replaced). They are extremely sharp when new and wear very well as they are heat treated and hold an edge... have cut myself on more than one through-out the years. Only negative to this design is it is light and penetration in hard soils can be difficult.

Probably my most valuable tool....

The Super A... With a mounted 1 bottom plow in the first photo... I also have a one row mounted cultivator for it.. which is uber invaluable... If I have to I can use the old 231 2 row planter too.. though my 4 row 455 and the 560 do a MUCH better job...

Image

Image

Image

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gone cuttin
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It is not a picture of mine but it is more about a broadfork http://www.epinions.com/review/Johnny_s_520_Broadfork_9677_epi/content_421780885124
McClure Ranch

cynthia_h
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I never go out to my plants without

1) weed stick (aka weeder, asparagus knife, dandelion tool, etc.),
2) pruning shears,
3) bucket.

Cynthia H.
Sunset Zone 17, USDA Zone 9

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tomf
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Rootsy what year is that Farmall? It looks like a mid 50's. and in good shape. This week end is the Oregon Steam Up, go on line and check it out. I love all the old equipment, I will be going this week or next. They have tons of old tractors and things I never even saw before I went to it. The place "antique power land is really some thing to see; kind of the Disny Land of old power equipment, cars, trucks, Cat, trains, Steam power,fire trucks, tractors,and tons more but with the Steam Up it is way cool.

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rootsy
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tomf wrote:Rootsy what year is that Farmall? It looks like a mid 50's. and in good shape. This week end is the Oregon Steam Up, go on line and check it out. I love all the old equipment, I will be going this week or next. They have tons of old tractors and things I never even saw before I went to it. The place "antique power land is really some thing to see; kind of the Disny Land of old power equipment, cars, trucks, Cat, trains, Steam power,fire trucks, tractors,and tons more but with the Steam Up it is way cool.


1954, within a few thousand of the last one built before switching to the Super A-1. Aside from the cosmetics everything is functional and it is pretty tight. I've had to do a few things to it. Could use a rebuild sooner or later as it uses some oil. When I replaced rod bearings last month due to no oil pressure hot@idle I found it had original bearings dated 11-53.

My father and I have a couple of dozen antique tractors... 85% red, a couple extremely rare. It is how both of us were raised (red equipment on the farm). He is in Madison, WI for the weekend selling parts at the National Red Power Round-up show. Guess it is pretty large this year, covering something like 3 - 400 acres.

For steam I make a yearly trek to the National Steam Threshers reunion in Wauseon, Ohio. Held every June. Ton of steam doing a lot of tasks that are lost arts in the farming community of days gone bye.

Charlie MV
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I had to think about this for a while because I'm a such tool junkie and I pretty much love them all. My favorite gardening tool? I gotta go with my wife.

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tomf
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Rootsy this is a photo of some of the Farmalls that were at last years steam up. As you can see it is a lot more than steam, I do like the steam tractors a lot all though.

Image

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tomf
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tomf wrote:Rootsy this is a photo of some of the Farmalls that were at last years steam up. As you can see it is a lot more than steam, I do like the steam tractors a lot although.

Image


I live in the mountains so I needed a 4 wheel drive with a hydo tans and had to go new.

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tomf
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Gerrie if you hubby has a need for more power it is a good investment. I have 4 different weed eaters and the Sthil is the one I always use. I have a lot of land take care of so I need all the power I can get. I can not even compare the ones I got from the hardware store to the Sthil,( the hardware store ones were the most powerful they had)The pro Sthil just gets the job done way faster, WAY FASTER.

Susan W
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I guess I think smaller than most of you! I am a get down close person with my garden (flower, herbs). I carry my blue plastic tote. Has a trowel, twine, clippers, scissors and the most important, a hand held cultivator. This the the claw shaped tool with handle. I also have my foam kneeling pad.
Have fun!
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rootsy
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I own a Stihl 55R weed whacker... For a consumer level machine it is absolutely fantastic...

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tomf
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Rootsy they make good tools so in what tools they make I am only buying Sthil, I have a few of the chain saws also.

For hand tools I have a collection but the ones in the photo are very useful and different than a number of tools I have. The scrapper with a rake I got at a yard sale, the other scraper I got at a hardware store and the round scraper I got at a show from some one who made them from Oregon. The round one is good for getting close to plants.

Image

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rootsy
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I've had an MS310 20" for 5 years or so... Hasn't so much as had a hiccup. Just a bit small for some of the bigger trees that I end up felling each year. has heated the home each winter though... I am a Stihl believer... Due to the engineering, quality manufacturing, local dealer network, service if needed, parts availablity... All after the sale...

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tomf
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One of mine is a 310 it is a nice saw and it will run a 25" bar unlike the Farm Boss 290, I have a 20" and a 25" bar for the 310. The 25" does most of the larger stuff but some times it is even small so I am getting a bigger one soon.

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applestar
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I've been trying to figure this out...

I was going to say my gardening gloves, but most of the time, I find myself grubbing around in the dirt before I remember to put them on (I do *sometimes* remember to put them in my back pocket)...

I have a number of different hoes but I hardly ever use them. When I see weeds, I tend to hand-pull them out -- that's usually how I get my hands dirty in the first place...

Then, I was going to say my pruners, but if I can pinch or snap them off, then I won't bother to go back for them. So REALLY my most important tool for this application is my right thumbnail. I do keep a rusty pair of pruners in the hose holder utility tray. But sometimes, I need a clean cut with the good sharp pair, and other times I need the heavy duty *rusty* loppers for ground-level work, and other times i need the good loppers for *real* pruning jobs. Then there's the pruning saw and the long-pole lopper/saw that My dad and I share.

I have to say, my Japanese hand sickle comes in *very* handy for cutting tall grass and weeds for mulch and compost greens. I bought that when I realized that the el-cheapo chef's knife from DH's bachelor days, which was long ago banished from the kitchen and was relegated to service in the garden (1) doesn't cut for beans and (2) required a sideways cutting action that was awkward and stressing my bad shoulder...

For pruners and the sickle, an indispensable tool is a handy rock. I keep around a number of flat-bottomed stones for sharpening with. Oh, they also double as slug-squishing rocks. Then, too, I have several large rounded rocks that fit well in my hand that I use for hammering stakes and rebar into the ground. They all have a hollow indentation chipped out from the bottom now...

OK, let me see -- in terms of things that I keep out in the garden ready to use -- a trowel, a mini-shovel, hand rake, rusty pair of pruners, handy rocks, 5 gal buckets, watering can, watering hose...

Of course, I *could* say my most important tool is my pair of galoshes, except that both right AND left boot developed a crack this spring and do NOTHING to keep my feet dry. I've been meaning to get a new pair -- when I do, I'm going to fill the old red pair with potting soil and plant some flowers in them. My Lands End waterproof shoes used to keep my feet dry, but the waterproofing has disappeared. So on dewey mornings, rainy days, or during and after watering the garden, my feet and socks are completely soaked...

Right now, my bug jacket could be said to be my most important tool...

Then again, maybe it's the rope hammock in the shade of the plum trees....
Last edited by applestar on Sun Mar 18, 2012 9:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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hendi_alex
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I love my muck garden shoes and virtually live in them for all around the house outdoor activity. Am currently about half way through my third pair and will order a 4th pair soon, abut $40. Also, have a pair of higher top muck boots. They are insulated and very comfortable. Wear them mostly in the winter, or for kayaking during cool weather.

It seems that there is a pretty common theme among many of us on this board. Pretty hard to pin it down to one favorite tool. My small hand rake and trowel live at the garden on an antique section of a tree trunk that used to help support our 100 year old barn. Then there are the long handled tools all of which are used so very often. The wheel drive tiller that gets so much preliminary prep done early in the season. And then there are all of those occasional tools, not used very often, but a pure joy when the need arises. Sure would hate to have to narrow the selection down to just one tool.
Eclectic gardening style, drawing from 45 years of interest and experience. Mostly plant in raised beds and containers primarily using intensive gardening techniques.
Alex

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Diane
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My largest tool is a claw fork with three tines. This I use to pull up grass or weeds. I also use it to turn my compost pile. I move the pile a few feet left to right and back to keep the tree roots from growing in it.
I also have a bunch of rocks that I use to bang in poles or kill slugs with. :D
My most used tool is my cutters. Which right now is a one dollar pair of kitchen meat scissors. I have a small folding saw for pruning wood.
A tool I use a lot that doesen't belong in a garden is a scraper. I use it to remove soil from a pot and plant new plants. It's like a tiny square shovel.
I also have a bunch of large pot saucers I fill with soil and seeds as a nursery. I throw in last years seeds and never know what plants will sprout but it keeps me in new annuals and some perennials all summer long.
Gardens are a little bit of heaven on earth.

http://s600.photobucket.com/albums/tt87 ... G00047.jpg

Gerrie
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I also really like my husbands cordless drill when I use the five gallon paint mixer attached onto it, to stir the rabbit poop tea that I brew in five gallon pails. It smells so bad I can't get any closer to it than using that long mixer allows.
The spiritual life is first of all a LIFE, it is meant to be lived-Thomas Merton

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tomf
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Rootsy I went to the Steam Up but only had so much time, it would take 2 days to see it all and only if you moved along and did not go slow. I will be posting some of the old farm stuff I got at it.

I took this photo of a restored Farmall for you. Do you know the year?


Image

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nes
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No jokes needed, my favourite? My hoe, I love my hoe :).

I think because I didn't have one with my first "gardening attempt" and I didn't have one for my spring planting either. Absence makes the heart grow fonder & it's my favourite tool! I use it for weeding, planting, chasing the dogs out of the garden, shaking at the small child when he's being bad :D...
Vanessa raising organic vegetables, livestock, wildflowers, and family in zone 5A.

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rootsy
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tomf wrote:Rootsy I went to the Steam Up but only had so much time, it would take 2 days to see it all and only if you moved along and did not go slow. I will be posting some of the old farm stuff I got at it.

I took this photo of a restored Farmall for you. Do you know the year?


Image


Somewhere between 1939 and 1947

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