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10 Garden Tools That Every Gardener Needs

Garden Tools

Whether you are a beginner or an expert, there are certain tools that every gardener needs to be successful and have a more enjoyable time gardening.

When you are looking to purchase any garden tool, we highly recommend that you only purchase quality products. This will insure that you have the tool for many years to come, which will help you save money in the long run.

Also, it is disappointing when a tool breaks in the middle of working with it and you don’t have a replacement on hand.


One of the most basic tools in a garden, a hand trowel or spade is essential a small hand-held shovel that is made for digging up weeds, scooping soil, planting, and transplanting plants.

There are several different designs, including one with a saw blade on now side for cutting through roots. Because of the different designs, you may need more than one spade.

Choose a model with a non-slip grip, ergonomic handle to prevent hand aches and slippage. A stainless steel trowel is more durable, as it is less likely to rust.

Regardless of your skill level, a hand-held trowel is an essential tool that every gardener should have in their tool shed.


There are several reasons to own a good pair of pruning shears, but the main one is for convenience. These tools help to cut branches quickly and efficiently without straining your hands.

A good pair of pruning shears should be easy to maintain and sharpen. It should also come with a locking mechanism that keeps the blades closed when not in use.

If you are planning to buy a new pair, choose ones made from durable materials and one that is designed to swap out components quickly.

This is particularly important for young children who could potentially damage the blades of the pruners. Proper use of pruning shears is vital for the health and beauty of the plants.

Pruning will keep the plant healthy and attractive, preventing the plant from growing out of control. There are several types of pruning shears, which are categorized as an anvil, bypass, and ratchet.

Depending on the purpose, you might need to buy one that is suitable for both your needs and your budget.

Bypass pruners are best used for cutting live wood, while anvil pruners are mainly used for removing dead wood. A bypass pruner is easier to use than an anvil pruner and is great for cutting twigs and thicker stems.


A hand-held weeder is a useful lightweight tool to remove weeds from your garden beds or around shrubs. Hand-held weeders come in a wide variety of designs.

Some are miniature hoes, while others resemble long-handled weeding tools. Despite their short handles, these weeders still give you good control and are powerful enough to make the job quick and easy.

A fishtail weeder is another essential tool for your garden. Its long, narrow shaft makes it easy to dig deep into the soil and work across large areas.

Its blade is in the shape of an upside-down V and helps remove roots and weeds. Some of these tools have ergonomic handles, while others have a fulcrum for a steady grip.


The handles are made from wood, aluminum, stainless steel, or fiberglass, but we recommend going with an aluminum handle because it is lightweight and will last for years.

Rakes help remove stones before planting, smoothing out the surface of the soil, and preparing your garden bed.


A garden hoe has a long handle with a paddle or blade at the end, but this tool also is available as a hand tool for tight places.

This tool can also come as a combo, with a 3 prong rake that can make weeding easier, especially when the root system is close to the surface of the ground.

This simple but important tool is used for removing weeds at the roots as well as mounding up soil and shaping it.

This is great when your potato plants need more topsoil and is also helpful when making strawberry beds. There are different variations to this tool depending on your needs.


A cultivator is a tool with a long handle that is used to break up the soil at the surface, preparing the soil for fertilizing, better watering as well as removing weeds.

You should look for a sturdy handle and a solid shaft will be the best quality and last the longest.


A good tiller will make the work of cultivating your soil easier and faster, but it is more costly than a cultivator and may only be used once or twice a year. Tillers are more practical for medium to large-sized gardens because of the time savings over the use of a cultivator.

Also, a quality tiller starts at around $300 and goes up from there to over $2,000 and with a smaller garden, this expense may not be worth it.


When digging the soil in your garden, a shovel is a must-have tool. There are several types to choose from. Most shovels are sharp and have a step on top of the blade.

This step helps the gardener push the shovel into the ground with their foot. There are several types of shovels and some people confuse a spade with a shovel.

A spade is similar to a shovel but has a flat blade with a concave design. A spade is designed to dig soil and can be used as a scooper or a digger. The edges are sharp and help cut through tough soil.

Some spades have a step to help users leverage their legs when digging. Another type of digging shovel is the trenching shovel. It is a cross between a transfer shovel and a drain spade.

A trenching shovel has a long blade and a pointed tip, which reduces disruption to the sides of a trench. It also has a flat bottom, which makes it good for edging. These two types of digging shovels are an essential part of a gardener’s toolbox.

They can be used to dig holes for fencing and for trenching irrigation systems. No matter what you need to dig, a gardening shovel will help you get the job done faster and easier.


With many different kinds of shovels, choosing the right one for the job can be the difference between a short task and one that takes all day.


Flat shovels are designed with a flat square blade to scoop dirt, mulch, or gravel and are the perfect shovel to use with a wheelbarrow.


Pointed shovels are designed with a point at the tips of the shovel, narrows towards the tip, curves up slightly, and are made for digging.

The foot plate allows you to use your weight to push the blade deeper into the dirt and makes it easier when digging in heavily compacted soil.


These shovels are just like pointed shovels but with a shorter D-handle, making this perfect for working in tight spaces.


This shovel is also known as a ditch shovel and is perfect for digging shallow trenches, as well as cleaning them out.

They have a long, narrow blade with a pointed tip, and are set at an angle to the handle.

Because the blade is so narrow, using your foot to drive the blade into the soil is not possible. Instead of using your foot, you will have to use arm power and because of this, it will be difficult to dip a deep trench.


Wheelbarrows are good for adding or removing soil from your garden and they come in different sizes and are made of steel or plastic. For a typical backyard garden, a 4 – 6 cubic feet wheelbarrow will be sufficient.

Ones made from plastic should be made with UV-resistant plastic. Steel wheelbarrows should be hung on a barn wall, or turned upside down with 3 – 4 bricks or blocks.

This is to make sure that water doesn’t collect at the bottom of the wheelbarrow and rust it out.


Garden hoses come in many different lengths and qualities, but what is most important is protecting the hoses from the damaging rays of the sun with a hose reel.

When using a hose reel or just coiling up your hose, take your time and don’t put kinks in the hose. Over time, this leads to pinholes in the hose which will lead to larger holes.

Watering wands come in many different styles, with some being ergonomically designed for the hand. Unlike traditional watering cans, watering wands provide a gentle, rain-like spray that doesn’t drown plants.

Instead of a hard blast, the watering wand prevents the soil from splashing out and damaging delicate plants. These wands also have long shafts that enable you to reach plants without bending or squatting.

They help you water your plants efficiently, reducing the chance of injuries from repetitive motion. Watering wands are available in different lengths and colors, and allow you to find the right one for your specific needs.

They also allow you to reach plants in window boxes and balconies. The main difference between a watering wand and a spray nozzle is that the former is designed for watering plants, while the latter allows you to water the soil with a low-pressure stream that won’t disturb the leaves or foliage.

When choosing between watering wands and spray nozzles, it’s important to find a model that suits your needs.


A good pair of gardening gloves can come in handy when pruning plants like a rose bush, but they can also help prevent blister and abrasion.

They also help you keep your grip, reduce hand fatigue, and yes keep your hand clean. This may be more desirable with container gardening for some people.

8 Must Have Herbs to Grow in Your Garden


There are eight must-have herbs to grow in your garden, from savory to sweet, these herbs are useful in various culinary dishes.

Herbs are easy to grow in a garden or a container and they can help to give your food flavor all year long.

Growing herbs in containers is a good option for anyone who doesn’t have the space, especially in a garden.

Some herbs though should be grown in your garden because of their ability to attract the right kind of insects or deter the wrong kind of insects.



Basil is native to the tropical regions of Central Africa to Southeast Asia where it is treated as an annual plant. However, it can also be grown as a perennial.

It is known for its fragrant leaves that are used in popular culinary recipes, it that can grow to be as tall as 1 foot, and the time to harvest is three to four weeks.

Basil is best harvested by clipping the stem above the point where the two largest leaves meet. Regular clipping of the stems will result in a bushier and more rounded plant with more leaves.

If you’re growing it in a pot, keep in mind that it needs watering more frequently than other plants. Water it deep when the top inch of soil is dry and as the weather warms up, it will need even more watering.

Mulch or rocks will help to keep moisture in the soil and extend watering intervals.

Ideally, you should plant the seeds six weeks before the last frost. However, basil is sensitive to cold, therefore using a seed starter tray will allow you to start the seeds early indoors.


  • Sweet basil
  • Holy basil – is also known as sacred basil or tulsi in India and is called kaphrao in Thai.
  • Thai basil
  • Camphor Basil
  • Dark opal basil
  • Lemon basil – a cross-pollinated hybrid between Thai basil and Mrs. burns’ lemon.
  • African blue basil – a cross-pollinated hybrid between camphor basil and dark opal basil.
  • Lettuce leaf basil
  • Mammoth basil
  • Dwarf bush basil
  • Genovese basil
  • Nufar basil – a variety of Genovese basil and is resistant to fusarium wilt.
  • Spicy globe basil – grows more like a bush.


  • 50 – 70 days


  • 6.0 – 7.5


  • Aphids
  • Cutworms
  • Flea Beetles
  • Grasshoppers
  • Japanese Beetles
  • Leafminers
  • Nematodes
  • Snails and slugs
  • Whiteflies
  • Spider mites
  • Caterpillars
  • Thrips


  • Cercospora leaf spot
  • Downy Mildew
  • Fusarium Wilt
  • Leaf spot



Chives are naturally widespread throughout much of Europe, Asia, and North America. It is related to onions, shallots, scallion, garlic, leeks, and Chinese onion, with the flowers and leaves being eatable.

Planting chives in early spring will give you the best results, but they can also be planted in fall in the lower south for harvest during winter.

They prefer a sunny location but they will tolerate partial shade and are also drought resistant.

When planting them in your garden, keep in mind that they need to be planted 8 to 10 weeks before the first frost, but they can be started indoors by using cardboard seed starter pots or an empty cardboard egg carton.

Chives are perennials that will do well in containers, allowing enough room for them to spread, but when established, they need little care although you must harvest the leaves regularly to encourage new growth.

They should be harvested by hand when the leaves are six inches tall and the leaves should be cut about half an inch above the soil level.


  • 50 – 70 days


  • 6.1 – 7.8


  • Aphids
  • Thrips – onion thrips and western flower thrips.
  • Onion maggot


  • Puccinia alli – also known as rust fungus and chive rust.
  • Phoma terrestris
  • Rhizoctonia solani
  • Fusarium culmorum
  • Pythium aphanidermatum

3. Mint


Mint is a widely distributed plant that can be found in wet environments, where it grows best, across North America, Europe, Africa, Asia, and Australia.

Unlike most herbs, mint prefers moist soil that is well-drained and should be planted about 2 feet apart because it can grow to be 2 feet tall.

This pungent perennial herb grows so fast and will quickly take over an area if left unattended, therefore you will need to harvest or trim them more often than other herbs.

Because of their ability to grow so fast, they are a good fit to be grown in containers that can be placed anywhere.

This herb can be used for many purposes, such as soothing gastrointestinal issues, helping with digestion, relieving headaches, and repelling bugs.


  • Peppermint
  • Spearmint
  • Pineapple mint
  • Chocolate mint
  • Japanese peppermint – also known as American wild mint, Canada mint, Chinese mint, Sakhalin mint, and East Asian wild mint. It contains higher amounts of menthol which gives the minty aroma and flavor.
  • American wild mint – also referred to as Canada mint.
  • New Zealand mint
  • Slender mint – native to South Australia, Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland, and Tasmania.
  • Forest mint – native to eastern Australia.


  • 75 – 90 days


  • 6.5 – 7.0


  • Root Borers
  • Spider mites


  • Verticillium Wilt – also known as fusarium wilt.
  • Powdery mildew



Thyme is native to the Mediterranean region and was used by the ancient Egyptians, ancient Greeks, and the Romans.

It is mainly used today for culinary purposes, but it can also be used for medicinal purposes as well as decorative purposes.

When planting it, make sure to space the plants 12 to 24 inches apart. Plant them in well-drained, fertile soil that contains plenty of organic matter.

When choosing thyme for your herb garden, make sure you choose a variety that has low maintenance requirements.

Harvesting should begin at the outermost branches of the plant and work its way down the stem. By cutting off the outermost branches, you’ll encourage branching and more leaf production.

You should also remember that thyme is a perennial herb. As such, it grows year-round in milder climates and you can even cultivate this herb as an evergreen.


  • Silver thyme
  • English thyme
  • Lemon thyme
  • Orange balsam thyme
  • Pennsylvania Dutch tea thyme
  • Juniper thyme
  • Hi-Ho silver thyme
  • Caraway thyme
  • Italian oregano thyme
  • Foxley thyme


  • 75 – 90 days


  • 6.5 – 7.0


  • Aphids
  • Meadow moth
  • Sandy slow
  • Weevil



Cilantro also known as coriander is native to Southern Europe, South-Western Asia, and North Africa.

It’s important to work the soil evenly because cilantro plants have deep and long taproots.

Growing cilantro in a container that is at least 8 inches deep is a great way to enjoy this aromatic, pungent herb year-round.

If you want to make a continuous harvest throughout the season, plant cilantro seeds every two weeks or so, and the time to harvest is about 30 to 55 days after sowing.


  • 50 – 70 days


  • 6.5 – 7.5


  • Aphids
  • Beet armyworms
  • Leaf hoppers
  • Whiteflies


  • Pseudomaonas syringe
  • Erwinia carotovora
  • Erwinia chrysanthemi
  • Pseudomonas marginalis
  • Carrot motley dwarf disease
  • Carrot mottle viris
  • Powdery mildew
  • Pythium spp
  • Rhizoctonia solani


Sweet majoram

Sweet Majoram or knotted marjoram as it is also known as is native to Western Asia, the Mediterranean region, Cyprus, Turkey, and the Arabian Peninsula.

Seeds are best started indoors four weeks before the average last frost date in your region.

Soak the seeds overnight to help with germination and then transplant them into larger pots or in your garden when they are about four to five inches tall.

Plant seedlings 12 inches apart in well-drained soil with plenty of sunlight.

Growing marjoram in a container is an excellent solution for those who don’t have a garden or patio. When temperatures begin to fall, it will need to be moved inside and placed in front of a sunny window.

Once the plant has rooted, they need about 21 days to start blooming and this will help to attract pollinators, which is what this plant is well known for.


  • 75 – 90 days


  • 6.5 – 7.5


  • Whiteflies
  • Spider mites
  • Thrips


Lemon Balm

Lemon Balm is in the mint family and is native to southern Europe, Mediterranean Basin, Iran, and Central Asia.

It is a very hardy herb that can grow to a considerable size in a garden or container.

Start the seeds at least 6-8 weeks before the last frost, and transplant them outdoors once the soil has warmed up enough.

When growing lemon balm in a pot or your garden, keep in mind that it can become a bit invasive if not harvested or trimmed on a regular basis.


  • 50 – 70 days


  • 6.0 – 7.5


  • Aphids


  • Powdery mildew



Nettle is native to Europe, North Africa, most of Asia has more moderate temperatures and New Zealand.

It prefers moist soil that is well-drained and that already has a good amount of nitrogen in it.

Growing it in and around your garden is another great way to use a natural pesticide.

This plant also makes great fertilizers, so be sure to grow some extra for your compost pile.

This herb is a great deterrent for deer and other animals because of the hairs on the plant which are meant to protect it from predators.

Remember to use gloves when handling the hairs which contain cystoliths that can irritate the urinary system.

If you get poked by the plant, expect to see some inflammation at the site, along with some skin irritation. Using a cream with an antihistamine or hydrocortisone should give some relief.


  • 80 – 90 days


  • 5.0 – 8.0


All herbs should be harvested by hand, with the best time being in the morning. You can use a pair of scissors or pruning shears to cut the herbs.


There are various ways to preserve them, including air-drying, freezing, and refrigerating.

If you’re going to use them soon, it’s a good idea to freeze them.


After the herbs have been harvested, wash them, bundle 3 to 5 stems together and wrap the steams with cotton twine, make a knot that is not too tight and leave a trail that is about 3 inches long.

Don’t bundle more of the 5 stems together because of the possibility of mold developing on the plant.

From this point, you can use the tail to hang the herbs by hanging a piece of twine and tieing the herbs to that piece of twine.

Hanging the herbs upside down while drying allows the oils in the stems to flow into the leaves, making them more flavorful.

The drying process will take 5 to 7 days, depending on the humidity level where they are being dried.

Another method for drying out your herbs is to use a dehydrator. They come in several different configurations to choose from to fit your needs.


Preserving herbs in any kind of oil is a great way to add some flavor to any dish. The leaves of any herb can be used in combination or by themselves.

Before preserving any herbs, you will need to get some glass bottles that have a resealable cap such as a twist-on cap or a reusable cork that is attached to the bottle.

Make sure that the herbs are fully dried before adding them to the oil, if any water is allowed to mix with the herbs then this will make the oil go bad or rancid and the whole contents will have to be trashed.

Basil pesto comes from Italy and is the most famous example of preserving herbs in oil, that dates back to 1863.

It is traditionally made with extra virgin olive oil, sweet basil leaves, parmigiano reggiano, peco rino, and pine nuts.


If you freeze the herbs after drying and preserving them in oil or butter, they can last six to nine months without significantly losing their flavor.

This method is best suited to harder varieties of herbs such as oregano, rosemary, sage, thyme, and basil. Other varieties of herbs may not freeze well, such as chives, dill, and basil.

Remember to label the herbs and include the date, this will ensure they stay fresh for as long as possible.

7 Natural Ways to Get Rid of Pest in Your Garden

Garden Pest

Are you tired of paying hundreds of dollars for chemicals to control the pests in your garden? Try natural ways to get rid of pests.

Nature has its own ways of keeping everything in balance and your garden should be no different.

By using a variety of different methods that nature has to offer us, we spend less time dealing with pests and more time gardening.

The problem with chemical pesticides is the fact that we are consuming them when we eat foods that are sprayed with them and there are known health issues related just to their use of them.

Yes, pest control will always be a constant war over your garden and the bounty it provides, but nature provides us with an arsenal of tools, such as preditors, plants, essential oils, and more.


There are several different flowering plants that are a great pest deterrent, nice to look at and make a nice garden border.

Adding bird feeders in and around your garden will attract birds and in turn, they will also eat any bugs that they see in your garden.

There are several common insects that eat other insects as well as their larvae, such as ladybugs, praying mantises, ground beetles, parasitic wasps, and some flies.

Knowing how to attract these predators is much better than the next option.

Buying some carnivorous insects can help to deal with any large infestation of pests, but that can take some time, and hopefully, they will make the journey through the shipping process.

Attracting the right kind of insects can be the difference between a thriving healthy garden and a successful bug buffet.

Planting a variety of different plants will help to attract the right amount of different predators to your garden.

To attract small parasitic wasps and flies, plants in the carrot family are known for this.

  • Caraway
  • Coriander
  • Dill
  • Fennel
  • Bishop’s Flower
  • Queen Anne’s Lace
  • Toothpick Ammi

To attract ladybugs and soldier beetles, plants in the aster family are known for this.

  • Blanketflower
  • Coneflower
  • Coreopsis
  • Cosmos
  • Golden Marguerite
  • Goldenrod
  • Signet Marigold
  • Sunflower
  • Tansy
  • Yarrow


Companion plants should be planted both in your garden as well as a border around your garden for best results.

Many different herbs and plants can be used as a pest deterrent, consider using garlic.

This aromatic onion relative is an effective deterrent against aphids that feed on lettuce and leafy greens.

Basil is known to attract beneficial insects while repelling pests like white flies, aphids, and cucumber beetles.

Other herbs such as cilantro, sage, thyme, rosemary, mint, and lemongrass, but we suggest using lemongrass as a border because they can grow quite large and repels insects.

Marigold is an excellent plant as a border plant because it produces no food.

It has a strong smell that repels mosquitoes and nematodes. They also attract beneficial insects, such as ladybugs, which attack aphids.


This powder is a natural mineral-based insecticide that comes from fossilized aquatic plants and also has antibacterial and antifungal properties.

Only food-grade diatomaceous earth should be used in a food garden and can be purchased at local garden centers, home improvement stores, and online retailers.

The best time to apply it is after a light rain or in the early morning when there is still dew on the ground. If you want, you can also lightly water the ground before use.

Make sure not to apply it before a rain because you don’t want it to get washed away, if this happens then it needs to be reapplied.

If needed, you can also mix 2 cups of diatomaceous earth per gallon of water and spray it on any effect areas. This is helpful for larger areas of treatment.

When applying to small areas, just sprinkle a few tablespoons over the affected area and let it dry.

Follow this procedure every week for effective pest control and repeat this treatment as necessary if the problem persists.

If the pest infestation is not visible, you can apply it directly to the soil when it is dry so it can get in the cracks and crevices.

It is highly recommended to wear a mask when applying the powder because the dust can irritate the mucous membranes.


  • Aphids
  • Ants
  • Mites
  • Snails
  • Slugs
  • Thrips
  • Earwigs
  • Adult Flea Beetles
  • Cockroaches


Some essential oils are toxic to insects, so they’re effective repellents or pesticides, such as orange, lemongrass, and cedarwood are all highly effective.

Tea tree oil, for example, destroys insect exoskeletons. Cedarwood interferes with insects’ neurological functions and works well against aphids and slugs.

Neem oil acts as an effective insecticide and repels more than 200 types of garden-destroying insects. It is also an anti-fungal and supports the soil.

Thyme oil is particularly effective against spider mites and beetles. It interferes with pest hormones and deters females from laying eggs.

Clove oil works as a fungus preventative, as it contains eugenol, which causes the cells of some fungus species to break down.

Rosemary repels aphids, flea beetles, cabbage butterflies, and more. You can also spray rosemary oil on your pots to discourage pests from attacking your plants. Its fragrance is also a natural butterfly attractant.

Lavender is well-known for repelling mosquitoes and cabbage loopers but the scent of lavender will also attract pollinators such as bees and butterflies.

Orange is good for repelling aphids, beetles, squash bugs, and ants. This oil is also good for attracting pollinators.

Using 15 – 20 drops per oil into a spray bottle and mixing it with water is a great natural insecticide. Just remember to shake the bottle before every use.


  • Peppermint – aphids, beetles, slugs, cutworms, ants squirrels, chipmunks, mice, and moles
  • Cinnamon – snails, ants and kills fungus
  • Cedarwood – slugs and snails
  • Eucalyptus – Mosquitos


Insecticidal soap is an easy-to-make remedy that can be formulated with a few household ingredients.

One recipe calls for one cup of organic vegetable oil, a tablespoon of organic soap, and a tablespoon of dishwashing soap.

Be sure to use a natural soap that does not contain bleach or degreasers.

To make your soap, fill a spray bottle with warm water and add a few teaspoons of vegetable oil.

You can also use castile soap, which contains a milder formula that is safer for your plants.

Depending on how many plants you want to spray, one quart is enough.

Insecticidal soap is formulated for a short-lived residual action. This means that insects must contact the soap for it to be effective.

Repeat applications may be needed every 4 to 7 days and excessive soap application may cause leaf damage.

To avoid over-treatment, apply insecticidal soap in the morning and late afternoon.

Insecticidal soap is formulated to kill a variety of insects, including aphids and other soft-bodied pests.

It kills these pests by disrupting their cell membranes and removing protective waxes on their skin. It’s also effective against immature larvae and eggs.

Planting a sacrificial crop

Planting companion plants near your garden is a good way to help your crops grow and keep pests at bay.

In addition to helping the plants in your garden grow healthier, these companion crops also attract predators that will feed on pests and eventually get rid of them.

Planting sacrificial crops like sunflowers or nettles will protect your vegetables from cabbage white caterpillars.

Another way to help control pests is to plant a trap crop, these are sacrificial plants that attract pests away from your other crops.

This is done by placing the sacrificial plants around the perimeter of your garden.


Keeping animals out of your garden may be as difficult if not more difficult than insects, but there are ways.

Sometimes erecting a simple fence is all that is needed, but other times there needs to be more done.


To keep deer out of your garden, sprinkle dried blood meal as a border around your garden, you can also sprinkle it between your rows. This will also keep out rabbits and groundhogs.

This will need to be reapplied every 7 to 10 days for best results.


Surveyors tape is a bright orange color and it has been shown to keep them out by using stakes around your garden and wrapping the Surveyors tape around them.


Red pepper flake is something that most critters don’t like, spreading it around your garden as a border will help.

The smell of different citrus fruits is a nasty smell to many different animals, therefore using the peels of oranges, lemons, and grapefruit can be a good barrier around your garden.

You can also use essential oils and reapply every 3 to 4 days and after every time it rains.

You can also use the urine from predators like coyotes, which can be purchased at garden centers and on the internet.

Another option is an ultrasonic pest repellent, which is effective against deer, skunks, raccoons, and other animals.