Dang it! My hand weeder is again missing. After all the work I put it through yesterday, it is probably hiding under a pile of rose canes. Debris piles are all over the garden right now so it wouldn’t surprise me. If I don’t find it soon, I’ll be forced to buy another. Then, one day, I’ll find this one as I cleaning and clearing away.
It’s important to have good tools. In fact, it is one of Carol’s five keys to garden happiness, and I agree.
Whether your passion is cooking, baking, crafting or gardening (all things I enjoy), good tools make your job easier and more enjoyable. I’ve found I only need a few garden tools to make me happy.
- A good pair of loppers is one of the essentials. I like the 28- inch Fiskars Power-Lever Loppers because they have gears which make them more powerful and easier to use. I also like these shorter ones because they are more manageable to navigate deep into the roses, and they make clean and easy cuts on dead wood.
- A great pair of Felco Classic Pruners. Mine are the original model, but I think these are neat because they are more ergonomic.
- Speaking of ergonomic, I love this weeder spade thing, the Radius Garden Natural Radius Grip weeder. I actually found mine at a discount store in the city (sorry, there were only a few). It is wonderful for digging out dandelions and other deep-rooted weeds. It also works great as a trowel especially for bulbs. Have you ordered your rain lilies yet?
- I wouldn’t go gardening anywhere without my Muck Boot garden clogs. I love, love, love them. They keep my feet dry, and they can be hosed off for cleaning. Better than destroying another pair of walking shoes.
- My WOLF-Garten Draw hoe is another great tool. I’ve had many hoes, and this type is my favorite. It is aluminum and can be left out in the garden with no warping of the handle and no rust. After well made, low maintenance, is essential in hoes.
- I have several, favorite brands of gloves. When I had a lot of arthritis pain, I used the Bionic Women’s Elite Gardening Gloves with the reinforced fingertips. (After I quit eating dairy and wheat, I don’t have as much hand weakness and pain, but I still like this brand.) I also like WomansWork and Ethel gloves. Ooh, Ethel has a rose glove. Boy, I’d like to have that. I bet the gauntlets would breathe, and my arms wouldn’t sweat. Very, very nice for different types of jobs. Why do I wear gloves? A couple of reasons. I’ve been stung by assassin bugs a couple of times accidentally (they drop to the ground when startled). I like to squish grubs, but not bare handed, and once I got into a mess of blister beetles, which caused Leprous looking blisters on my thumb. I also have fake nails. I know, the last is odd for a gardener.
But, back to my hand hoe. Smith & Hawken, in those days when they made really good garden gear, had the most wonderful hand weeder. This one, from A.M. Leonard, comes close, but the handle should be a bit bigger around to reduce hand strain. I also love my CobraHead Weeder and Cultivator, but I use it for different tasks especially dealing with the dreaded Bermuda grass. If anyone knows of a similar, triangle-head, forged, hand weeder, I would be very grateful.
Sniff. Sob. I miss my weeder.
By the way, in accordance with full declaration rules by the FTC, I bought all of these products myself. I have, in the past, received Ethel and Bionic gloves as gifts during the Garden Writers Association’s annual meeting and the Garden Bloggers’ Spring Fling in Chicago. I wore out both of them in the garden and then, happily bought more.
We manufacture Clarington tools here in the UK. Why don’t you let us send you a replacement hand trowel. British made, should be just the job. Drop me a note with you mailing address and we will send one over to you. Stuart
Stuart, thank you so much. I will drop you a line.~~Dee
I love a good tool.
.-= Susan Tomlinson´s last blog ..Spring Break: Chickens Gone Wild =-.
I hate when I lose my weeder. I am constantly sticking my cobra head into the wheelbarrow for future reference when I am out and about, and then dumping it onto the compost pile when I empty the barrow. More than once it has been discovered by a person getting ready to run garden waste through the compost grinder. I don’t even want to think about the kind of noises that machine would make if the cobra head weeder inadvertently got chucked into it while it was running!
.-= healingmagichands´s last blog ..Time to Spring Forward =-.
I agree that you really don’t need that many gardening implements. But you need well made ones. I bought several garden tools a long time ago from S&H back when they carried a line from England – I think they were called “Bulldog”. They are still around today, including a hoe/weeder with a triangular head. I do wish I could keep gloves for longer than a season though. The only way I can do that is to rotate through 4 different pairs.
.-= Jean´s last blog ..Jonquil Jubilee! =-.
I have a hand shovel outside there somewhere I just know it’ll show up this spring while I’m somewhere in one of the beds… sometimes I’ll start a different project before finishing up some weeding or throw it down until later and then forget where that was! ha.
I like all you pics, I’m inspired to take some pics of all my little daylilies sprouting up out of the mulch…such a promising sign. although they say it may be cooler next week…I’m ready! hope too see you in March. 🙂
I’m convinced a bright “tarp” blue handle would be helpful in my yard for tool recovery. The felcos pruners are indispensible, I agree. This is the year I buy some really good quality gloves. Also on my must-have list: I couldn’t do without my old white detergent bucket that I load pulled weeds into.
And I admit (to my everlasting shame) that I, too, sport fake nails.
Christine in Alaska
Your blog looks gorgeous! And that top pic looks just like my yard this past Saturday.
.-= Jo´s last blog ..Spring Is Springing! =-.
When I worked at a big private garden in college we spray painted all the handles of the tools bright red. It made spotting them in the garden a lot easier!
.-= Willi´s last blog ..Love It: ‘Golden Alexandria’ Strawberry =-.
My husband used to wouldn’t let me buy good tools because I was always losing them. I finally learned to keep up with most of them, so now I buy better tools. I have a trick to keep up with some of them, though. I have a large yard, so I “hide” pruners in different areas of the yard. I keep a pair in the back of the mailbox to trim the roses around it. Several pair are in zippered bags, like cosmetic bags, and hang on a trellis or hook near where I need them. I have an old mailbox in the rose bed that I keep the rose pruners, leather gloves and leather gauntlets in.
I didn’t used to wear gloves or gauntlets until I got rose bite disease (http://www.gvrs.wcgf.org/health2.htm). I had skin ulcers for almost a year before I found out what it was and new ones would come up regularly. Then I took antifungal medicine for 4 months and used an antibiotic cream for a month afterwards because the sores were infected. I still have the sores and it has been over 2 years but they are getting better, finally. Some people end up in the hospital with it.
.-= Melody´s last blog ..Five Things =-.
Lisa at Greenbow
I just hate to lose a good tool. I have some of those debris piles myself.
Carol, May Dreams Gardens
Thank you for the nice link. I love your list of tools. I don’t have that Wolf-Garden Draw Hoe. I am coveting it now!
.-= Carol, May Dreams Gardens´s last blog ..Dear Friends and Gardeners: March 8, 2010 =-.
I think your hand weeder must be with my hand shovel which I use when mixing compost for seedlings or potting on. Isn’t it annoying not having the right tool to hand when you want it.
.-= Joanne ´s last blog ..BURIED TREASURE? =-.
Somewhere deep beneath the soil in my side yard, a trowel is buried. It wasn’t one of my favorites, thankfully. I sometimes think about its being unearthed centuries from now … somehow I doubt it will be a priceless antiquity.
.-= Cindy, MCOK´s last blog ..What We Lost In The Freeze, Part 1 =-.
Mr. McGregor's Daughter
I think tools should be designed so that the device that beeps when you clap can be attached to them. Just a thought.
.-= Mr. McGregor’s Daughter´s last blog ..Chicago Flower & Garden Show: Through the Looking-Glass =-.
Jeff and I used to visit Leonard’s tool store and we bought a few treasures there. I love my Fiskar’s loppers, they’re a smaller version and better for my small hands.
What’s with me and gloves? I seem to always want to feel the earth, but then I’m not working around roses as you are.
I am going to buy you one of those bendy pole things with a flag on top. You know, like
bike riders mount on their bicycles.
Sharon Lovejoy Writes from Sunflower House and a Little Green Island
I had to laugh – my Felco’s have been in the compost – somewhere – for several months, and I’m too stubborn to replace them. Also love my muck boots – you can work longer when your feet are dry!
.-= Cyndy´s last blog ..“I Just Hate Potentillas!” =-.
I won two of the Radius ergo tools at Austin Spring Fling 2008! I think I’m going to order a pair of the Ethel rose gloves…they look like good protection from poison ivy vines that hide in the mulch. Hope you find your hand weeder soon. gail
.-= Gail´s last blog ..Spring Walks The Red Carpet =-.