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GARDENING : Dig This List of Handy Tools

August 29, 1992|From Associated Press

Carving out a garden is a difficult chore without the right tools. As interest in gardening and landscaping grows, keep adding to your tool inventory to lessen the workload.

Here is a list of tools you should have:

* Spade (either with a straight or D-shape handle) for breaking new ground, general digging and mixing soil.

* Spading fork for breaking up soil or moving well-rooted plants.

* Hard-toothed metal rake for smoothing soils, breaking up dirt clods or gathering garden debris.

* Lightweight metal rake serves as a broom for the garden.

* Hoe for cultivating, or removing weeds.

* Scuffle (pronged hoe) for bigger jobs and cultivating in tight areas.

* Trowel for digging small holes for individual plants.

* Claw for cultivating tight areas.

* Shrub clipper for pruning and cutting shrubs and small vines and sticks for the compost pile.

* Two-handed lopper for bigger pruning tasks.

* Dandelion lifter for removing dandelions and other long-rooted weeds.

* A watering can for individual plants.

* Wheelbarrow for hauling dirt, large plants and compost.

* Bucket for smaller hauling chores.

Be sure to add some garden gloves and twine to the collection. They'll come in handy.

Tools work better and last longer when they are kept clean and sharp. Before putting them away, use a putty knife to scrape away stuck-on soil. Several times a year rub down the blades with coarse steel wool or sandpaper. Periodically sharpen shovels and hoes with a file.

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