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Hand tools

Hand tools such as trowels and forks are used regularly in the garden so it's important to choose the best ones for you. This section features all kinds of hand tools including ones with large easy-grips and multi-change tools.

Top tips for choosing hand tools

  • Stainless steel trowel and fork
    Traditional stainless steel or polished aluminium tools glide easily through the soil and are easier to clean.
  • Plastic and composite tools do not make as much impact in the soil as metal and they vary widely in quality. The best ones are strong and very light but are still best suited to use in lighter soil.
  • Avoid choosing cheaply-made pressed steel tools. Forks and long handled trowels made in this way are likely to bend with the force used when digging, particularly if you have balance or coordination problems and use the tool for support.
  • If you have a weak grip, choose tools with contoured grips to give more control and padded grips with a larger diameter may be easier to hold if you have arthritis
  • Trowel with arm support
    Digging with a weak wrist can be easier with upright style handles which can be fitted with an arm support to help prevent you dropping the tool.
  • Wrist straps and finger guards are also useful and the strap can be used to hang tools in the shed or on a garden trolley.
  • Consider the tool ranges with interchangeable heads – you choose a handle which is the right length for you and then buy separate tool heads such as a trowel or fork. You simply the click the handle and tool head together as needed. Although these tools are more expensive to buy, they are usually good quality and can be used with long handles and shorter handles depending on the job you are doing.

Fork and trowel

Forks and trowels

These tools are available with different length handles and are generally made in metal or plastic. The plastic tools tend to be thicker and are more difficult to push through the soil. The better metal tools are made of stainless steel and although wooden handles are traditional, look out for the modern soft cushion grip style handles.

Dutch hoe

Small hoes and soil cultivators

Hoes work with either a 'push-pull' or 'chop' style action. There are also specialist hoes that pull weeds and remove them with the roots attached.
Cultivators are useful for breaking up weed free soil that does not need digging. These tools have prongs, blades or wheels.

Multi-change tools

Multi-change handtools

These tools have handles and interchangeable heads – you choose a handle which is the right length for you and then buy separate tool heads such as a trowel, fork or cultivator. You simply the click the handle and tool head together as needed.

Peta Easi-Grip hand tools

These stainless steel tools have a soft grip upright style handle which helps keep your wrist and in a neutral position and helps reduce strain.

Find out more about peta easi-grip hand tools

Trowel and fork

These tools are lightweight and have soft handles which are comfortable to hold.

Find out more about trowel and fork

Small cultivator

Small cultivating tool

This dual purpose tool has three tines for breaking up hard soil and disturbing the roots of weeds.

Find out more about small cultivating tool

Small draw hoe

Small draw hoe

Part of the Wolf Garten multi-change range, this tool is more suitable for hard soil, and is used with a pulling or chopping action.

Find out more about small draw hoe

Weed pulling hoe

Weed pulling hoe

V-shaped notches at the back of this push-pull hoe can be used to catch thick stemmed weeds. Best suited for use in cultivated soil.

Find out more about weed pulling hoe

Gardena combi-system

Gardena combi-system

This is a well made set of interchangeable tool heads and handles. The securing system means they can be changed using one hand.

Find out more about gardena combi-system

Wolf Garten multi-change range

Wolf Garten multi-change

This range of tools is available with two options of shorter handles and numerous tool heads.

Find out more about wolf garten multi-change