Five gardening tools you didn’t know you needed

Nick Moyle and Rich Hood

If you often find yourself at a loss when tackling your garden check out these five essential tools you definitely need

There are some gardening tools that we would consider essential. Fork, spade and trowel all fall into this category, with other common items including rakes, hoes and some sort of cutting implement not far behind. But there are many more tools available for specific tasks and some, when you’ve discovered their benefits, soon become as indispensable as the rest…

 

Mattock

The mattock is one of the most versatile weapons of destruction in the gardener’s arsenal.

Similar to a pick axe, it has a handle with a double-bladed head at one end: a blade similar to an axe, to chop in a vertical plane; and another (an adze) on the opposite side that is rotated through ninety degrees allowing you to chop in a horizontal plane.

This dual action allows you to perform a wide variety of chopping and digging duties, including removing thick and stubborn roots from an overgrown patch or loosen up and hoe hard soil.

 

Paving knife

If you have any area of paving in your garden, then you’ll know how tricky it can be to remove moss and weeds from the small gaps between the slabs.

On a paving knife a ninety-degree blade and hook allows you to access awkward slots so you can slice and lift away any unwanted weedy occupants. When you quickly get the hang of it you’ll be looking for other nooks and crannies in which to put it to use.

 

Edging tool

If you’re a fan of pristine lawns, then an edging tool is a must.

Fixed to the end of a long handle is a curved, sharp blade. Position it at the edge of the law, thrust your foot on the top part of the cutter as you would a standard spade, and marvel out how easily and neatly the turf is cut.

 

Onion hoe

The common Dutch hoe may be able to race through a patch of infant weeds in no time at all but try and maneuver it in and around your rows of precious seedlings and you’ll find it’s more unwieldy that you imagined.

An onion hoe is a purpose-built hand tool for this task, with its short blade designed so you can whip out the invaders with a swift and sure clawing motion.

 

Hori Hori

The hori hori is a Japanese tool designed like a narrow trowel with a sharp blade.

It can perform most of the same duties as a regular trowel, along with some of those you would use a knife for, but is at its best when properly combining the two uses, such as cutting out holes in which to plant bulbs or digging out stubborn, rooty weeds.