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hendi_alex
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What is your favorite hand tool for the vegetable garden?

And where can you buy it with the best value (quality vs. price)? The previous thead on this topic got really heavy into power equipment which to me is different from where I thought that the thread would lead. So here is your chance again, if interested, to tout your favorite hand tool for the garden.

One of my favorites is the EZ digger or EZ Hoe.

repost from a different thread that got locked.

I really like my EZ digger that is of Asian design. Hand forged blade is very strong and durable. One of my most versatile tools. Comes in both long handle and short handle version.

https://www.amleo.com/index/item.cgi?Words=ez2&cmd=view
Eclectic gardening style, drawing from 45 years of interest and experience. Mostly plant in raised beds and containers primarily using intensive gardening techniques.
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rainbowgardener
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favorite hand tool

Here's mine which a friend gave me a few years ago and has hardly been out out my hand since (except in winter :( )

garden trake ( = trowel + rake)

https://www.earthlygoods.com/tools/trake_garden_tool.html

pepper4
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Mine is my rake/spade combo with an adjustable handle for heigth. No name brand and I bought it at the end of last year in a season clearance. Paid around 5.00 for it and it works well for me and held out ready for next year :D If I'm allowed 2, next would be my true temper shovel. Nothing fancy but helps with turning over the ground and have had it for various projects for about 5 years. Both were good prices and seems quality is the same for what I need. :wink:
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I enjoy a little multi-tool type garden tool my friend gave me as a gift. It is a clipper, wire cutter, knife and serated edge knife! I don't know where he got it so I cant help you there!

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gixxerific
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I read this earlier today and have been thinking about it most of the day.
I would have to say my hand.

I use my hand to do 80+% of the work in my garden. To digging holes to checking on plants for bugs and fruit. In reality I use my hands and a garden trowel for almost everything and my hand more than the trowel.

But if you want a tool than I would say my newly purchased handy dandy trowel. A "Do-It" brand garden trowel.

p.s. my best tool ever is my friends the worms. Don't tell them though or I might have to start paying them, stupid Worm Union law's and all. :P :lol:

cynthia_h
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gixxerific wrote:
p.s. my best tool ever is my friends the worms.
I, too, am an Exploiter of Invertebrates. :twisted:

Poor things :wink::

1) Fed first-rate coffee grounds, coconut coir, newspaper printed with soy-based inks, vegetable and fruit peels, cores, leaves, etc. At a frequency they themselves select.
2) Kept in shade and protected from temperature extremes year-round in a Worm Factory under an old wool blanket.
3) Checked frequently for moisture: too much? not enough? just right?
4) "Stables" cleaned out at their request.

Oh; and I never go outside without 1) weeding stick aka dandelion fork aka asparagus knife, 2) trowel, 3) pruning shears, in that order.

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Sunset Zone 17, USDA Zone 9

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Gary350
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25 bird houses in the back yard near the garden.

I have not had any bugs in my garden in 30 years. I never have to spray. Bird houses are better than any bug sprayer.

[img]https://i43.photobucket.com/albums/e358/gary350/Wren01.jpg[/img]

The birds are a lot of fun to watch. The Wren family and their 3 babies are always a lot of fun to watch.

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applestar
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That is a GREAT photo with the 3 babies with their mouths wide open. Looks like the poor Mom/Dad wren is having trouble which one to pop the food in! :lol: I never realized this particular benefit of an oblong entrance, I've only seen one baby at a time out of the round entry. :wink:

stars1
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Re: favorite hand tool

rainbowgardener wrote:Here's mine which a friend gave me a few years ago and has hardly been out out my hand since (except in winter :( )

garden trake ( = trowel + rake)

https://www.uxsight.com/product/51487/compact-folding-hand-shovel-portable-trowel-garden-tool.html
Mine still have a Hand Trowel which is finished by good work to ensure amazing digging power. Quite perfect for your camping, garden or emergency needs.
vicky

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jal_ut
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I use a butcher knife a lot for weeding close and sometimes for planting nursery stock instead of a trowel. Other that that, a hoe.
Gardening at 5000 feet elevation, zone 4/5 Northern Utah, Frost free from May 25 to September 8 +/-

DoubleDogFarm
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I like my azada, Hori Hori, bachi gata hoe and Japanese grass sickle.

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soil
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not this exact one but i have one with the same design and a bamboo handle.

https://www.fine-tools.com/G309989.htm
For all things come from earth, and all things end by becoming earth.

DoubleDogFarm
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soil, That's a good tool also. My brother uses his all the time.

GardenJester
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I use a weeding and cultivator(a hoe with a 3 prong rake) hand tool alot. The 2nd most used tool would be an utility shear. Also a mallet, once in a while you just got to pound things. :P

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applestar
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I guess this is the weeding season. I think my favorite tool change seasonally. For now, I've brought out my Japanese weeder from S&H -- it has a wicked sharp, squat triangular head on a swan-neck. Great for mass destruction of weeds surrounding a desired plant. That and the hand-sickle to trim/harvest long grass for mulch and compost greens. Basic tools are hand trowel and hand rake. I also have an old butchers knife -- useful for many tasks. I used to also use the butchers knife for grass harvesting, but the motion required simply begged for the hand sickle.

TZ -OH6
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I use a short D handled shovel for most things. I don't know if I just don't know how to use a hoe, or if my dirt is too hard, but they just don't work for me, I get frustrated scraping over weeds, get mad, try to chop them and then break another hoe handle.

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Ozark Lady
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I agree that my hand is my number one tool.

I also like a hand trowel, and a hand rake, nothing long handled at all.

Most weeds I pull by hand. In a week or two, my weedeater, to keep my paths to my garden open, and edges of beds clear, will be my buddy.

I have a set of garden tools, that are interchangeable, there are tillers, aerators all kinds of stuff. But these are not as close to the plants as I prefer to be. I leave them in the box, and want my simple green thumb trowel and my hand rake.

I do also use my leaf rake and garden rake alot early on to get the leaves under control. But, once a bed is growing, I sit on the edge and work on the bed.
Talk to your plants.... If your plants talk to you... Run!

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Alan in Vermont
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The key that starts the tractor.

scot29
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At harvest time, my favorite tools are my fiskars hand snips. I have a large set for things like squash & broccoli, and a very small spring loaded set that comes to a fine point. I use these to harvest most things. They reach into tight spaces & are great for things like lettuce, spinach, & chard. I like to use them for peas & beans as well.
Last edited by scot29 on Sun Apr 25, 2010 7:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Duh_Vinci
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As odd as this may sound - a huge wheel barrel! That is where I do all my soil amendment mixing... I love the feel of fluffy mix that I top the plants with.

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garden5
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I've heard a lot of good things about those Japanese garden hoes. I'd have to say that the tool I get the most use out of the two-sided hoe: on side is wide, like a standard hoe, while the other is very narrow, great for loosening hard ground or hitting small weeds.
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StorageSmart2
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Re: What is your favorite hand tool for the vegetable garden

hendi_alex wrote:And where can you buy it with the best value (quality vs. price)? The previous thead on this topic got really heavy into power equipment which to me is different from where I thought that the thread would lead. So here is your chance again, if interested, to tout your favorite hand tool for the garden.
I have a lot of different things that I've used in the garden, ranging from trowel/rake combos to butter knives. I think, though, that my very favorite tool in the garden is my hands. After all of these years I've never outgrown playing in the dirt. :D

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hendi_alex
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The dirt has gotten really rough on my hands, since I've gotten a little older. This year I started wearing gardening gloves for many of the tasks, but what a sacrifice to do so. There is just no substitute for the feel of handling the soil when repotting or transplanting.

This idea of 'favorite' tool really is too broad I guess. As my dad used to say, [have the right tool for the right job.] The topic could be more addequately addressed as: favorite long digger, favorite short digger, favorite shovel, favorite wheel barrow/hauler, favorite fork, etc.
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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Alan in Vermont
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[quote="Duh_Vinci"]As odd as this may sound - a huge wheel barrel! /quote]What's a wheel BARREL? Something for hauling liquids? I know you use a wheelBARROW for moving dirt around.

garden5
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hendi_alex wrote:The dirt has gotten really rough on my hands, since I've gotten a little older. This year I started wearing gardening gloves for many of the tasks, but what a sacrifice to do so. There is just no substitute for the feel of handling the soil when repotting or transplanting.

This idea of 'favorite' tool really is too broad I guess. As my dad used to say, [have the right tool for the right job.] The topic could be more addequately addressed as: favorite long digger, favorite short digger, favorite shovel, favorite wheel barrow/hauler, favorite fork, etc.
Or, you could say "what it your most used tool in the garden", though I'd have to say that it is probably still my favorite one.
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applestar
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Re: Wheelbarrow vs. wheel-barrow vs. wheel barrel

You know, I've noticed that people call that "thing-um-a-bob with a wheel and handles" different names. Maybe it's a regional nomenclature? Maybe at one point, somewhere, clever people took a barrel, cut it in half and put a wheel and handles on it? What's a "barrow" anyway? I had to look it up: Dictionary.com
a flat, rectangular frame used for carrying a load
Put wheels on that, and I might call it a cart or a wagon....

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