As I get older, I enjoy tending a garden more and more. Last year we decided to begin creating an English garden in our backyard and it has been so rewarding to see our plants grow. It was the perfect distraction when the world was under quarantine and we could work on an activity outside. I know many other people discovered this enjoyable pastime as well. I thought it would be fun to put together a few of our most used gardening tools for all of the beginner gardeners out there.
There is still a long way to go to get my garden where I want it to be, but I am ok with the slow progress. I know that every year the plants will grow bigger and soon I will have the garden of my dreams that can rival Ina Garten!
One of my favorite parts of gardening is that it can be really inexpensive! If you have perennial plants in your yard, there is a good chance you can transfer them to another area. Many perennials can even be divided to share or spread throughout your garden.
The first Spring in our new home was during quarantine and I had so much fun watching different plants begin to sprout. I moved rose bushes, peony bushes, hosta, and iris flowers. My neighbor was thinning out her garden and brought over a few wheelbarrows full of plants she no longer wanted.
Once I made this incredible discovery, I kind of put it out into the world that I was open to taking anyone’s plants they no longer wanted. Because I wasn’t afraid to ask, I ended up with dozens of free plants to begin our garden.
These were all native perennial plants and require less maintenance. They also require less water because they are native to the climate where I live. Do you know the native plants to where you live? If you are starting your garden, consider reaching out to friends and family to see if they have anything they are interested in giving you to get started.
While working in our backyard, we also found a bunch of old bricks. I was able to use this found material to create brick borders around flower beds. We also snagged an old iron arbor that we found on the side of the road. It worked perfectly with our English garden vibe!
Favorite Tools for New Gardeners
- Gardening Gloves – A good pair of gloves make all the difference when working in your garden. Gardening gloves will help to keep your hands and nails clean (mostly). They will protect your hands from scrapes when pulling out roots or pruning bushes.
- Nisaku Hori Gardening Knife – This is my favorite tool right now. It has a straight and serrated edge that allows you to cut through difficult weeds or divide plants.
- Pruning Shears – You will use these shears all the time in your garden. They are perfect for dead-heading plants and removing small branches. They are also perfect for cutting gardens to cut flowers for arrangements.
- Stand-up Hand Tiller – I use this tool often to prep the soil in the Spring. It is the perfect tool to break up hard soil or mix compost into the soil.
- Spade Shovel – I choose this shovel over the digging shovel when I need to dig a straight line. The digging shovel has a slight curvature to it so this one is perfect for edging. It’s great for cutting through roots too with its sharp edge.
- Hand Trowel – Hand trowels are fantastic for planting your flowers in pots or the ground. Most trowels have measurements on them so you can get the appropriate depth that the plants’ instructions recommend.
- Garden Rake – Garden rakes can be used in so many ways. This type of rake is sturdier than the rakes used for leaves. I often use ours to spread mulch and usually flip it teeth side up and use the backside to move the mulch around.
- Hand Cultivator – This hand rake will help loosen up soil. We use it for its intended purpose but also use it frequently to pull out weeds.
- Loppers – This tool is helpful when shears are too small to cut a branch. They are perfect for cutting thicker branches on bushes or trees.
- Digging Shovel – This is the shovel you want to use for big holes. I use those most often to dig holes for plants with larger root balls like a hydrangea bush or roses.
- Shower Head Watering Wand – I really like this nozzle attachment for my hose to water the plants in our garden. It is easy to hold and allows you to increase or decrease the water pressure on the wand.
- Wheelbarrow – We use our wheelbarrow all the time! It is the best tool to move large amounts of mulch or even to carry a bunch of potted plants across the lawn. I highly recommend investing in one of your own.