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Using the best tool for the job

I am always amazed when I see beautiful, weed-free, lush green gardens with gorgeous flowers and vegetables! I can honestly say that I am green with envy. Having a beautiful garden is work, a lot of work. When we moved to Parma, MI, I was so excited to have a huge garden. We finally had a home with acreage that would allow my dream of a large garden to become a reality. I quickly realized that we had rocky soil. Not just a rock here or there, but I believe that we may have more rocks than dirt. In order to make a large garden we would need a rototiller. The little garden hoe was not going to work. Even with the rototiller, it was tough to work the ground because the rocks can really destroy the blades in record time. There are hundreds of garden tools, and it can be overwhelming to know which ones are needed. Some are gadgets that are neat to have, while others actually make the job of gardening easier. There are digging tools, like rototillers, shovels, forks, spades, trowels, dibbers, and hoes. Watering tools, like hoses, misting bottles, watering cans, and sprinklers. Cutting tools, like pruning shears, loppers, saws, axes, scythes, hatchets and mowers. Propagating tools, such as cloches, cold frames, greenhouses, flowerpots, dirt pods, trays and seed pods. As a note, each tool has many varieties. Such as shovels, do you need a round, pointed or flat blade? Maybe you need an edging shovel, trenching shovel, coal shovel, power shovel, or a post hole digger. Do you want a small handheld shovel or long handled shovel? Will you be using the shovel for rocks, snow, or dirt? Let's not forget that to garden the following items are also very useful, wheelbarrows, composters, garden clothes, gloves, fertilizer, fencing, tool storage, and books or magazines about gardening. Oh, the lists can go on and on!

My favorite garden tools are a pointed shovel, a stirrup hoe, a small garden spade, and a good metal rake. I was just mentioning to my husband that I need a pitchfork, as it would be great for the compost pile that I am starting this year. I have a heavy-duty pair of gloves for pulling weeds. The leather on the gloves makes it easier to remove picker bushes. I also have a pair of gardening gloves with rubber on the hand part, these gloves are great for planting and help keep my hands dry. I have several books on gardening that I often refer to, however, I am always on the hunt for the best tips for keeping the garden weed-free. I welcome any tips or advice you can give me. What has worked for you? What are your favorite gardening tools?

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