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Frequent Contributor

Ergonomic Garden Tools

Hi, Kay,

 

I hope that you're doing well? Last summer you invested in several ergonomic garden tools. Do you recommend any of these to other gardeners? Thanks.

 

--Cheryl Tevis

SF

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Honored Advisor

Re: Ergonomic Garden Tools

Hi, Cheryl!

Yes, I invested quite a bit in gatden tools over the last two growing seasons. Those that I would consider the most ergonomically designed were those Radius tools, all of which I got via amazon. The longhandled ones have a "circle" end on most of the handles (except for the rake, which I think was called a Shark...it looks like a shark's mouth, for sure.

I find the Radius design brilliant...you can grip it so much better than even a stirrup handle. I just took delivery on a long-handled weeder...some Canadian thistle has to be rooted out of my little plot.. This is a takeoff on the hand weeder that I was so crazy about. The hand tools are very comfortable to use, too.

Other than the handheld and full-sized Radius, I grabbed a set of their " mini" spades and groundhog rake for each house. Winn thinks they are his, but they are great for a quick, small job fir me, too.

The other stuff I really love that I bought were not really " ergonomic" designs, but they work great as well. These are classic DeWit diamond head and heart hoes. I alsp bought their dibble and a gardener's knife.

DeWit makes hoes with both very long handles, so they can resr on your shoulder, or with pistol grips. Many of their hies are "scuffle" hoes, which means you push them along ahead of you as you work the row. I used the diamondhead for weeding my rose and flowerbeds. It is probably my favorite garden tool of all time. It is extremely sharp, thoigh, not for children, or even to be kept ehere a child couod reach it. It is that sharp!

I got many of the DeWit items from Gordon Tools. They are expensive, compared to a hoe from Lowe's, but they are worth every cent.

The other thing we really invested in last year was drip tape irrigation on timers, for the vegetable plots. All of that came from Dripworks. Wonderful. I am installing their systems with " shrubblers" on my roses and other expensive shrubs this year. That will relieve me of the watering chores that come for at least a few weeks in June-July.

Right now, Mike has helped me start a new greenhouse. It will likely take us all summer and fall, at the rate we are going. Hope you have a great gardening year!
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Frequent Contributor

Re: Ergonomic Garden Tools

Hi, Kay,

 

Thanks so much for offering your advice, based on your personal experience! I'd like to incorporate some of your

comments into an article, if that's OK?

 

I also have resolved to invest in some new garden tools, and take it easier on myself this summer. 

 

Drip tape really would help reduce the watering chores; I don't know if I have the confidence (or know-how) to do that.

Wow, a greenhouse!  You have great gardening ambitions. Please post updates through the season!

 

--Cheryl Tevis, SF

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Honored Advisor

Re: Ergonomic Garden Tools

Cheryl., sure, use whatever you need.  I would recommend Radius tools as being the most ergonomic I have ever used.  Winn is three, and they are very intuitive for even a toddler.  We planted strawberries with my hand trowels this morning. 

 

As for the scuffle hoes, they are very different from what I grew up using in chopping crop rows, which was a typical "garden" hoe.  I think the DeWit tools are a product of the Netherlands. 

 

Once you learn how to use a scuffle hoe, it is grand.  It just isn't what we were taught in getting out wiregrass and sheepburrs from peanut fields.  I would fight anyone who tried to take my diamondhead hoes now.  Their only fault is the extremely sharp heads, so I don't use them when Winn is with me, and have to store them where he cannot get to them. 

 

The greenhouse project is sort of an afterthough, from taking over the studio houes next door in VA.  In my mind, it wraps the fron t nd one side of a cinderlock building in the backyard over there.  We got the ledger boards up last weekend, and I am hoping to pull strings for the footprint soon. 

 

 

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