The 14 Must-Have Gardening Tools

As a gardening enthusiast, you know that the right tools make all the difference. They will help you to grow a healthy and flourishing garden. But with all of the different options available out there, deciding on the best gardening tools can be a bit overwhelming.

Therefore, we sifted through the reviews of many of the must-have gardening tools and pulled together this list of the best gardening tools and where to buy them.

So let’s dive right in.

Best Gardening Tools

1. Best Soil pH Tester: Luster Leaf Pack of 3 Rapitest Soil Testers on Amazon

Luster Leaf Rapitest Soil Tester 3 Packs
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The very first item on the gardening tools list is a soil tester. It is one of the most important and often overlooked, factors when planting a beautiful garden. The Luster Leaf soil testers include tests for pH and Nitrogen. It also tests for Potash, which are salts that contain potassium. 

The degree of acidity or alkalinity in soil determines the nutrients available, the type of plants that can grow, and how long they will survive. Nitrogen levels indicate the amount of energy that plants can extract from the soil to grow to their fullest potential. And potassium affects the ability of the soil to absorb other nutrients. 

Many things can influence your soil’s pH and mineral levels, including rain, temperature, fertiliser, and weed-controlling chemicals. Therefore, some experts recommend testing your soil annually. This makes sure that it remains at the optimum level for plant growth. However, after a while, as you gain an understanding of how your soil responds to these external influences, you can gradually reduce testing to about every 3 to 5 years, as recommended by some scientists.

2. Best Hand Trowel: Edward Tools Bend-Proof Garden Trowel on Amazon

Bend-proof Garden Trowel
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One of the basic gardening tools to have in your garden shed or toolbox is the hand trowel. Made out of stainless steel, the Edward Tools Bend-Proof Garden Trowel is an incredibly strong and durable trowel. It is well-suited for even the toughest of soils.

This has been branded by its manufacturers as bend-proof and rust-resistant. This trowel has a lifetime warranty to back up its claim of lasting quality and durability. They guarantee to replace it no-questions-asked if it bends or breaks at any point after purchase.

Valued for its sturdiness and affordability by reviewers, this trowel may be slightly heavier. Some gardening enthusiasts are used to 0.2 kg. However, its ergonomic grip and palm rest help to keep your hand from tiring as you transplant your plants like the lovely Ruby Ficus from Plants Across Melbourne.

3. Best Hand Fork: Spear & Jackson Garden Hand Fork on Amazon

Garden Hand Fork
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The long handle of the Spear & Jackson Garden Hand Fork is one of its most appealing features. Useful for getting to those tough-to-reach spots in your garden without crushing your lovely flowers. It is also a great choice for people struggling with back pain or problems bending down.

Made from stainless steel, this hand fork will last a long time without rusting. Customers also rate it highly for its lightweight and value for money. Its wooden handle is weatherproofed, enabling it to withstand exposure to the harsh sun and rain without damage.

While most hand forks have a hole on the handle for hanging, the Spear & Jackson hand fork comes with a 14 cm leather strap. This allows you to hang it on pretty much any type of nail or hook.

4. Best Weed Puller: Fiskars Xact Weed Puller on Amazon

Hand Using Weed Puller in the garden
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You can forget all about bending or kneeling down to pull up your weeds with the Fiskars Xact Weed Puller. The sharp stainless steel claws of this 1-metre long tool can reach up to 10 cm below ground. It can remove the roots of invasive plants, such as dandelions, saving you time and strain on your hands.

For best performance, make sure to wet the ground first before using the weed puller. The damp soil allows its claws to penetrate much deeper and more effectively into the ground. It will also help to extend the lifespan of the weed puller. Alternatively, you can choose to do your weeding in the mornings. During this time, the soil is still damp from the morning dew.

Reviews of the weed puller highlight its lightweight and ease-of-use as some of their favourite features. You can also choose between an ergonomic or non-ergonomic handle with a 1-dollar difference between the two.

5. Best Gardening Gloves: Wells Lamont Women’s Hybrid Work/Gardening Gloves on Amazon

Hands working while wearing gardening gloves
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Gardeners work with dirt, mud, water, and sharp thorns. During a good, long gardening session, their hands also get hot and sweaty. Therefore, they typically need gloves that are robust enough to keep their hands protected under all of these conditions. Gloves that are breathable enough to also keep them dry.

This is where the Wells Lamont gardening gloves come in. Made from HydraHyde leather, they are water-resistant, abrasion resistant, and have padding that keeps your hands well-protected. At the same time, the material is also breathable enough so that your hands don’t get too sweaty.

You can adjust the tightness of the cuff at the wrist to get just the right fit for you. This will also keep soil out, therefore, keeping your nails nice and clean. Two of the glove’s features that are highly rated by customers are its durability and comfortable fit. This is partly due to the reinforcement at the fingertips that ensures that they last longer while also increasing grip and dexterity when handling your plants.

6. Best Pruners/Secateurs: Fiskars Softgrip Bypass Pruner on Amazon

Gardening Tool: Pruners
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The first standout feature of the Fiskars pruner is spelled out in its name, and that is its soft grip. This factor improves the pruner’s ergonomics and also reduces hand fatigue. Thereby allowing you to work much more comfortably for longer. It also makes it a gentle and viable option for people with tendonitis or arthritis.

Weighing a mere 0.16 kg and only 9.9 cm wide, the Fiskars pruner fits easily in one hand. This enables quick cutting of plant stems and ornamental shrubs. The blades are coated with a low-friction solution. Easy to clean and prevents sap and other heavy liquids from sticking to them.

One of the best things about the Fiskars pruners is their lifetime warranty. They are also rust-resistant. Therefore, you can happily snip and snap away comfortably. Because you can have them replaced at any time should anything go wrong with them.

Hands using Gardening Shears
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If you’re looking to trim your hedges and bushes with little effort, one of the best gardening tools to use is the Spear & Jackson shears. Its tempered carbon steel blades are razor-sharp and durable. The notched edges make them capable of cutting thicker stems without much difficulty.

With the workout that is hedge trimming, the manufacturers of these shears thought to make the handles out of aluminum, so that they are lighter, and add a soft, non-slip grip for easier maneuverability. Consequently, the shears weigh only 0.96 kg and at 91 cm long they give you a great reach across your hedge.

Reviewers of these shears are particularly impressed with their sharp edge, price, and lightweight. And if you want to make the trimming process even easier than it already is, some users suggest that you walk backwards, instead of forwards, while trimming as this helps to further reduce the weight on their arms.

8. Best Loppers: Fiskars Bypass Lopper on Amazon

Gardening loppers
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For pruning thicker branches like those of raspberry canes, apple trees, and the chutes on maple trees, check out the bypass loppers from Fiskars. The blades of this lopper are made from precision-ground steel and have low-friction coating that – to quote some of its thrilled users – enables them to cut through branches “like butter”.

Bypass loppers are better for cutting live wood than dead branches and are most gardeners’ preferred tool for pruning trees because they provide a cleaner cut, thereby allowing the tree to heal quicker. And since this lopper has been designed to resist rust, you will be able to enjoy its smooth cutting abilities for many years to come.

With its long handles and total length of 71 cm, you can easily reach branches that are higher off the ground or right in the middle of thick, thorny bushes without worrying about getting scratched. As with most Fiskars tools, this lopper has a lifetime warranty and will be replaced for free any time it breaks or experiences a manufacturing failure.

Man pulling soil from garden using garden spade
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Although a little pricey, the users of this Fiskars garden spade deem it well worth the money. Built for power and durability, its sharpened blade and shaft are made from strengthened alloy steel that is 14-gauge and 18-gauge, respectively. It also includes a very handy foot platform on the back of the blade to enable you to push the head deeper into the ground when digging.

In addition to its ergonomic handle and height, which makes it gentler on the back, customers also rave about its sturdiness – with one reviewer describing it as being “built like a tank”. Users are also very pleased with the ease with which the blade creates edges and cuts through roots. One customer even used it to break up his aging concrete patio in no minutes, although that’s something we don’t recommend you do with this spade.

Garden spades are generally easy to maintain when cared for and stored properly. The Fiskars spade makes the maintenance job even easier thanks to its composition material, which is much easier to clean. Therefore, you can happily dig up your soil and reshape your garden beds, content with the knowledge that all the muck will easily wash right off afterwards.

10.  Best Garden Hoe: Draper Carbon Steel Draw Hoe on Amazon

Draw Hoe
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The humble hoe dates back to ancient history as one of the earliest gardening tools devised for cultivation. There are around 5 different types of hoes, but the most traditional one is the draw hoe, which is typically used in tilling, breaking up soil, and preparing garden beds.

The Draper garden hoe is a traditional draw hoe that makes gardening much easier with its strong and lightweight design. Gardeners love it for its reasonable price and long handle, which reduces strain on the back and allows you to get to hard-to-reach areas easily. The blade is made from carbon steel and therefore is rust resistant and remains sharper for longer.

To maintain its quality and performance, make sure you clean it each time after use and also, before storing it for winter, apply some lubricating oil on the blade. This will help to prevent the blade from becoming dull during that time.

11. Best Garden Rake: Gardzen 12 Tines Gardening Leaf Rake on Amazon

Woman using gardening leaf rake in the yard
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Leafy trees in your garden have a multitude of advantages, including providing shade, absorbing pollution, increasing the value of your home, and even lifting your spirits. One tiny snag, however, is that you have to deal with the fallen leaves. Although they make great compost for plants, scattered leaves can make a neat garden look a little messy.

To swiftly gather up leaves, pinecones, lawn clippings, and other debris from your garden, check out the Gardzen leaf rake. Lightweight with an adjustable shaft that can be changed from 1 metre to around 1.5 metres long, it is suitable for people of various ages and heights.

Furthermore, you can forget about raking your leaves into an open pile that gets blown about by the wind while you work. This rake comes with a well-built bag for collecting all the leaves as you gather them and, for good measure, they also throw in a pair of gloves. The result is a great value pack.

12. Best Garden Pick: Estwing GP100 Geo/Paleo Pick on Amazon

Garden pick
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If you’ve been struggling with rocky soil in your garden, then struggle no more because the Estwing pick is the prime tool for dislodging and cracking open rocks. Instead of the usual flat blade, it has an angled chiseled end in addition to the traditional pointed tip, which makes it all the most effective at its job.

Furthermore, given its no-slip vinyl grip and its durable all-steel head and shaft, you can definitely understand why customers have been referring to this pick as “a beast”.

The advantage that picks have over the hoe when it comes to digging is their ability to target areas with greater specificity and to dig narrow holes for planting, which is what you get with the Estwing pick. At 63 cm long, its longer-than-average handle gives you valuable reach and enhances versatility.

13. Best Garden Hose: GARDENA 20m Hose Reel Set on Amazon

Garden Hose
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With the Gardena hose, you save both water and money. In addition to its competitive price, it also has an anti-drip system that prevents water from being wasted while not in use.

This hose reel set also gives you the option of either mounting it on the wall or just using it on the ground. It comes with all the screws, brackets, and plugs needed for hanging it on the wall and its sturdy triangular frame means that it will remain upright on the ground as you use it around the garden.

Its careful construction includes an angled hose connector that ensures you have constantly powerful water pressure and the swivel axle on the reel keeps the hose straight at all times as you wind or unwind it. This hose also comes with a 5-year warranty, which means that you will receive a free replacement if it fails in anyway within that time. 

14. Best Water Meter: Dr. Meter S10 Soil Moisture Sensor Meter on Amazon

Soil Moisture Sensor Meter
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Do you regularly worry whether you are overwatering or underwatering your plants? A water meter will take the stress out of watering by measuring your soil’s moisture levels. The Dr. Meter Soil Moisture Sensor Meter is a reliable and easy-to-use tool that uses a simple colour-coded indicator to let you know how dry or wet your soil is.

This meter can measure soil moisture up to 20cm underground, typically reaching root level, and works on flowerbeds, lawns, and potted plants, like this potted succulent from Plants Across Melbourne. But take care not to insert it into very hard or rocky soil because it may damage the spike.

Much cheaper than similar meters online, the Dr. Meter does the same job to the same level of accuracy; therefore, it not only helps you save your plants but also saves your money. One thing to remember in order to get the best performance out of the meter is to wipe the spike with a cloth each time before and after inserting it into the ground.

Final thoughts

Finding the right gardening tools can take a bit of work, but hopefully, this list will go a long way towards making the process easier for you.

Once you do find the tools that work for you, check out Plants Across Melbourne for a wide selection of plants that you can grow in your garden or in your home. They have same-day delivery and excellent customer service.