10 Basic Gardening Tools Everyone Should Have, According to Experts
Ask any person with a green thumb and they'll tell you the same: A good set of tools makes your gardening endeavors that much smoother. "The right tools can easily turn a frustrating, difficult, sweaty job into a piece of cake," says garden and landscape designer Amber Freda. "They help save time and effort."
Along with expediting the planting and cultivating process, reliable gardening tools can save you money in the long run—which is why they're worth the investment at the outset. "When we use the wrong tool for the task, it is more likely to break, bend, or be less effective," says gardening expert Melinda Myers. "Quality tools last longer, so you will spend less money replacing tools that do not hold up to the task."
How does one separate the superior options on the market from the so-so? Myers says to start by considering the weight of the tool (it should feel substantial!)—but you don't want something that's too heavy to actually use. "Heavier tools can add weight to help with digging, but also require more strength and energy needed to use them," she explains.
Additionally, you'll want stick with tools that are composed of sturdier materials; this mostly applies to the handles, which, when built well, hep the entire tool last longer and save you energy. "Consider the weight and maintenance needs of handles, especially wood verses fiberglass," Myers says. "Fiberglass handles are less likely to break than wooden handles and do not shrink and expand with moisture. Larger and gel grips help reduce stress and extend work time." Looking for more advice to help you select a solid gardening tool? Ahead, we asked our experts to share the options they deem essential for an avid gardener and selected our favorites based on their recommendations.