I meet a lot of new gardeners. One of my primary garden coaching jobs is to help them embark on a successful, rewarding, and achievable gardening lifestyle.
Top 5 Tools for Beginner Gardeners
By Robin Haglund
- Ideal for cutting stems and light branches
- Adjustable blade tension adapts to your hand strength and the materials you’re cutting
- Fully hardened, precision-ground blade made from premium European steel stays sharp, even through heavy use
- Low-friction coating helps the blade glide through wood, prevents the blade from gumming up with sap and debris and helps the blade resist rust
- Lightweight, tough handle pads made from sustainable, renewable cork provide a comfortable grip and help absorb the jarring conclusion at the ends of cuts
- Aluminum alloy construction provides superior strength and reduced weight
- Bypass blade style
- Maximum cutting capacity: 1" dia.
- Lifetime warranty
- Quantum™ Pruner
- Ideal for making quick, clean cuts through branches
- POWER TOOTH® blade with razor-sharp, triple-ground teeth powers through wood faster
- Fully-hardened, precision-ground steel blade stays sharp, even through heavy use
- Blade folds into handle for convenient storage and transport
- Blade locks in the folded and unfolded positions for safety
- Non-slip grip
- Blade length: 7"
- Lifetime warranty
- POWER TOOTH® Folding Saw (7")
- Ideal for composting organic material derived from plants and animals to be used as fertilizer, soil conditioner and natural pesticide in gardening and landscaping
- Collapsible, spring-loaded design makes set-up and storage effortless and offers easy access to compost
- Optimal open-bottom design provides access for worms and microbes to speed the composting process
- Round shape evenly distributes heat during decomposition
- Mesh walls increase airflow to maximize the aerobic decomposition process
- Windproof lid secures compost and protects it from wild animals and pets
- Puncture-resistant coated nylon mesh walls offer lasting strength and durability
- Includes compost bin, cover and four anchoring stakes
- 75-gallon capacity
- Dimensions: 2.12L x 28.5W x 28.5H
- Limited lifetime warranty
- Eco Bin 75gal Compost Bin
- Ideal for a variety of garden tasks, including digging, breaking up growth, weeding, opening bags and more
- Multifunctional, plated steel head resists rust and includes a sharpened blade edge, serrated blade edge and a forked tip
- Extra-large handle with Softgrip® provides exceptional grip and comfort
- Durable design won’t break
- Handle hang hole provides easy storage
- Full lifetime warranty
- Big Grip Garden Knife (400S)
- Ideal for digging in tough soil
- Large D-handle design offers secure two-handed control when digging
- Welded 14-gauge hardened steel blade and 18-gauge steel shaft provide durability that far outlasts wood-handled tools and won’t flex like fiberglass
- Sharpened blade makes it easy to penetrate tough soil or break up hardened dirt clods
- Extra-large foot platform helps maximize force when driving the blade into soil
- Powder-coated steel resists rust and offers easy cleaning
- Length: 46"
- Lifetime warranty
- Digging Shovel with Steel D-handle (46")
Our professional-quality pruner powers through stems and light branches up to 1" diameter.
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Make quick, clean cuts through branches with a saw that folds for convenience.
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An innovative design makes composting easy and effective.
Take on a wide variety of garden tasks with a tool that's as durable as it is comfortable.
The steel D-handle design offers excellent control and durability to make digging in tough soil easy.
In addition to teaching these budding horties about weeds, soil, pruning, composting, plant care, pests, disease, and beneficials, I also take time to teach them about tools. Using the right tool for the right job can mean the difference between completing a task efficiently and successfully or getting hurt and giving up. Professionals like me evolve into tool collectors, but for the beginner, just a few foundational tools are all that’s needed to really dig in.
I can’t imagine trying to garden without a pointed-tip digging shovel on hand. This style shovel – whether you prefer a D-Handle or a Long Handle – is my go-to tool for preparing holes for planting, turning a bed, or doing a deeper excavation. If digging is your job, choose a shovel that comes to a pointed tip at the end rather than squaring off at the end. The square ends have their place, but for digging a hole a pointed tip is key.
Weeds happen. Perennials need dividing. Rootballs need breaking up. And, sometimes a gardener needs to set aside the big shovel, get down on her knees and carefully dig with a smaller tool. I always have a tool for these jobs strapped to my hip when I go out to work in the garden. The Fiskars Big Grip Knife is my go-to favorite for each of these tasks – and quite a few more.
Every gardener will need to cut and prune. Because just about every trip I make into the garden requires I trim a branch or cut back a spent perennial, I always make a point of having both my folding bypass shears and a folding handsaw on hand. I prefer a bypass shear rather than an anvil pruner for getting clean cuts on living material. (Bypass shears slice like scissors; Anvil pruners smash.) And, when I’m making cuts on branches that are a bit too large for my bypass shears; I pull out a folding saw to make those cuts. For new and veteran gardeners alike, the folding and locking mechanism may provide an extra bit of security against nicks and cuts.
Every gardener learns that cleaning up is a big part of what gardening’s all about. And a good rake makes easy work of clearing away leaves in autumn or pruning detritus in spring. They’re also handing for gently knocking heavy snow loads off weighted down branches in winter.
If you’re just beginning to fill out your tool shed, grab a pair of bypass shears, a folding handsaw, a pointed tip shovel, a big grip knife, and a rake. With just these five simple tools you’ll be growing with ease right from the start.