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Are you looking for basic gardening tools to get started in your own garden? Are you new to gardening and looking for the best tools to make gardening easier? Below is a list of my favorite gardening tools. I strongly recommend that you buy the best tools you can afford and take care of the tool instead of purchasing a cheap tool every few years. Most quality tools will last for decades if treated right.
This list also makes great gardening gift ideas for you friends or your favorite homesteading kids.
Where to Find Basic Garden Tools
If you can’t afford to purchase a high quality tool right now, you can visit a second hand store, look on Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist, check out yard sales or ask neighbors if you can borrow them. When you can, I recommending that you purchase the better tools one at a time as you can afford them. You can purchase your tools in many places, and I’ve linked some of the best places to get these tools below.
How to Maintain Your Basic Garden Tools
Once you’ve bought the best gardening tool you can afford, it is important that you maintain the tools so they last as long as possible. Here are a few things you can do to extend the life of your garden tools:
- Clean your garden tools when you finish using them (or if not every time, as often as possible) Make sure they are free of dirt and plant material
- Keep your tools dry when possible to decrease rusting. Store your tools out of the elements. For tools like hoses, make sure they are put inside during the winter months or when not in use to keep them out of the sun and prevent cracking
- Sand or use a wire brush on wood and metal parts of your tools
- Sharpen your tools with a wire file – specifically blades and anything that is used for cutting
- Oil your tools with boiled linseed oil
Types of Basic Gardening Tools
Below is a list of 7 types of gardening tools to consider whether you are looking for beginning gardening tools, or a few new tools to replace or add to your garden tool set. Depending on the size of your garden you may not need all these basic gardening tools, but each of these tools are carefully selected to make it easier in the garden.
1. The Best Tools to Garden in Comfort
Some of the best basic gardening tools for the garden make it more comfortable to garden. Many of these tools protect you from thorns, bug stings, and sore knees. It’s important to dress comfortably and remember that whatever you wear to the garden will get dirty, so make sure you select durable and easy to clean gardening tools!
Check List: Gloves, gardening bags, knee pads, shoes, boots and hat
2. Essential Weeding Tools
Any tool you get get to make weeding easier is going to save you lots of time in the garden. At the very least you will want a hoe, and you will want to think about a complete weed care system that includes mulching, etc. These are some of my favorite basic gardening tools and items I use daily.
Check List: Hoe, rake, hand weeding tool/knife
3. The Best Tools for Planting and Soil Preparation
Soil preparation and planting are time and labor intensive parts of gardening. Having the best gardening hand tools will make the work easier and lead to better success in the garden. I’ve included a tiller in this list although tilling your soil isn’t always the best method for preparing the soil. I’ve found a tiller helpful for starting gardens in certain areas on my yard where the soil is compacted of need to be broken up. I use these tools all the time!
Check List: dibble, spade, shovel, digging fork, digging knife (see above), tiller
4. Essential tools for Watering Your Garden
It's important to keep your garden well water and also encourage water conservation. The more prepared you are, and the better well thought out your watering system, the easier it will be to manage. It is one thing to haul buckets of water occasionally but if you are hand watering a large garden all summer, it will be easy to get behind. In addition to having the right tools, it is important to use landscaping to catch water and mulch to decrease evaporation.
Checklist: hose, hose, sprinkler, water system, watering can, nozzle sprayer, rain barrel
5. Basic Gardening Tools for Garden Maintenance
Once your garden is planted, your attention shifts from soil preparation and digging to maintaining, pruning, staking and more. The first thing to purchase is a good set of pruners. You will use these in the garden with tomatoes and one small fruit trees and bushes. Loppers and a chain saw are great items if you are cutting down larger trees and branches. A good garden pump sprayer is useful for organic sprays for pest control (such as neem oil) for fruit trees. A garden rake is helpful for laying down mulch, cleaning out the garden, and dealing with leaves in the fall.
Check List: pruners, loppers, pump sprayer, garden tubs, chain saw
6. Large Tools for Your Backyard Garden
I'm including just a few larger basic gardening tools for your backyard farm. A wheelbarrow is a necessity on all but the smallest homesteads. Purchase one that is sturdy, large enough to carry a big load, but small enough to maneuver. A small tractor is helpful on a larger backyard farm and is a great item to save up for but most backyard farms will just need a lawn mower. Finally a composter will help you quickly turn yard and food waste into healthy soil for your plants.
Checklist: wheel barrow, small tractor, composter
7. Basic and Power Tools for the Garden
These are just a few more traditional tools you will find helpful in your garden, especially for any building projects including raised beds, fencing projects, and more. You can purchase a tool set or get the tools one at a time as you need them. I've listed a circular saw below because this is what I use for cutting boards, but you could also look into a jig saw or mitre saw.
Check List: Tools Set, power saw, power drill
8. Gardening Tools for Kids
Getting kids out in the garden is so important that I decided to include just a few basic gardening tools just for kids. We purchased these items when our kids were young and they've loved feeling like they had the right tools to help in the yard. We've also gotten cheaper plastic tools for the kids but these usually broke quickly. We've also used these tools to teach our kids the responsibility of taking care of their tools.