Whether you’re new to the gardening game or an old hand, there are some gardening hand tools no green thumb can live without. Like a sharp pair of cutting tools, such as secateurs or pruners, to give your plants a smooth, even cut. For aerating and turning your soil and mixing in nutrients like manure and compost, digging tools are essential. Check out our range of trowels, spades, shovels, garden forks and compost forks. Our range also includes rakes and hoes, and the hardest working tool in any garden - wheelbarrows.
All the garden tools you need at Flower Power
Whether you’re new to the gardening game or a gardening veteran, you’ll know that there are some gardening hand tools no green thumb can live without.
Every gardener needs a sharp pair of cutting tools, such as secateurs or pruners, to give your plants a smooth, even cut. For aerating and turning your soil and mixing in nutrients like manure and compost, digging tools are essential, so make sure you have a trowel, spade, shovel, garden forks and compost fork from our range. We also stock plenty of rakes, hoes and wheelbarrows, as well as so all your hands-on gardening needs are covered.
Explore the full range of garden tools online or come in-store and ask one of our friendly horticulturalists for advice.
How to keep garden tools sharp
Good quality garden tools deserve to be looked after well, and this will have the benefit of keeping them sharp and working to the best of their ability. It won’t be the most fun you have in the garden, but good garden tool maintenance will make your life much easier. Here’s how to keep garden tools sharp:
Keep them clean. After every use, give your garden tools a hose down to wash soil off them, as soil can cause rust to form on steel surfaces, blunting your cutting tools. You may also need to scrub your tools quickly with a hard bristle brush, then dry them on a rag. Washing your garden tools also stops you spreading diseases, fungi, insects and weeds from one part of your garden to another. Tools that don’t really come into contact with soil can just be wiped thoroughly with a thick rag to remove gum or sap from the blade. Turpentine can help to break down persistent residue.
Apply oil. Motor oil on steel tools will prevent them oxidising and reduce rust, keeping them sharper for longer. Just wipe it over with a rag, or spray over larger surfaces in a thin coating. Don’t worry about oil going into your soil as it will break down easily.
Sharpen them. Use a hand held mill file or honing stone to sharpen hoes, shovels and blades on secateurs regularly, or as soon as you notice them getting blunt. Especially dull edges may require a high-speed grinding stone. If you’ve never sharpened gardening tools before, sharpening tools should all come with foolproof instructions, or you can ask for advice from a Flower Power expert. You can also take tools that cop a beating in the garden to a grinder to have them sharpened professionally.
Give each tool a home. It’s really important to store your tools properly, or all that cleaning, oiling and sharpening will have been a waste of time. Store them in a way that makes it easy to remember where you put them and get access to them, and put them back there every time. It’s best if you can hang them from the wall to keep them out of the way and prevent damage to the sharp edges. Banging nails into your shed wall is usually enough to hang tools on, but if there’s no obvious way to hang a tool on a nail you can also drill a hole into a handle that will act as a hook.
How to clean old garden tools
If you’ve been a little slack with your garden tools recently, or you’ve uncovered some you’d forgotten you had, they’re probably in need of a really good clean. Or you may come across some extremely high-quality garden tools going for a song at a garage sale that just need a bit of a polish. It’s easy enough to do it yourself, just takes a little elbow grease and a commitment to the cause. Here’s how to clean old garden tools.
Start by giving your old tools a really good hose off, to shift any loose clumps of dirt, cobwebs or debris. Give it a good scrub with a stiff bristle brush to loosen any particularly sticky bits, then rinse again as much as possible.
If your old tools have a light coating of rust, take some 80-grit sandpaper and sand as much rust as you can. Thicker rust may call for a stiff wire brush to get the job done. But if your old tools have a very heavy coat of rust, you may need to try a drill with a wire brush attachment. If you do this, make sure you’re using safety goggles as rust particles and wire bristles at speed can be dangerous for your eyes.
When you’ve got as much rust off as possible, sharpen your tools as above. This is an instance in which you may want to have tools sharpened by a professional. Then oil your old garden tools. This will stop the spread of any residual rust, and prevent any more from taking hold.
How to store garden tools outside
If you don’t have the space or the desire for a garden shed, your garage is full and your partner isn’t keen on tools in the living room, you start to wonder how to store garden tools outside.
The best way to store garden tools outside – everything from a trowel to a shovel – is by hanging them from purpose-built hooks under cover. This keeps them neat, off the ground to protect blades, and hopefully keeps them out of the worst of the weather.
You can drill these hooks directly into walls, but if your wall is brick or concrete, you may be better putting up a plank of timber to act as a frame.
Be wary of young children who can hurt themselves pulling tools off the wall. If you have little ones running around, you may need to put them much higher or behind a locked gate.
If your garden tool collection is incomplete, check out our range of everything from secateurs to shovels online, or visit us in-store and talk tools with our friendly on-site experts.