Using a Garden Wagon or Wheelbarrow

by April Reinhardt
(last updated January 20, 2016)

A garden wagon, or wheelbarrow, is a hand cart designed to be pushed by a single person. With two handles in the rear to hold onto, and a single wheel in the front, a wheelbarrow distributes the weight of its load between the operator and wheel. The design of the wheelbarrow makes it easier to carry heavy loads of dirt, compost, fertilizer, manure, and even tools when gardening. The single wheel feature enables the operator to maneuver in tight spaces, turn corners, and dump the load more easily than two-wheeled carts.

Many gardeners consider a garden wagon or wheelbarrow an invaluable garden tool. Whether you purchase a wheelbarrow made of metal, plastic, or wood, there are a few things to consider when selecting, maintaining, and storing a wheelbarrow:

  • Handles of wood are more comfortable than metal, but wood handles sometimes splinter if the wheelbarrow is left outdoors in the elements.
  • Plastic barrows can warp and weather if left outdoors in the sunlight, while metal barrows can rust. Always store your wheelbarrow with the lip down, and store it inside a shed or garage, if possible.
  • While a wide barrow tire carry heavier loads, they can be difficult to use in narrow spaces. Thin tires maneuver in tight spaces, yet make the barrow more prone to tipping. Always choose a barrow with an inflatable tire, since solid tires mar lawns and are soft in the garden.

Some barrow and garden wagons have built-in trays, while others can be supplemented with a detachable tray. Trays are handy because you can store your small garden tools with the barrow while you're working in the garden.

Garden wagons and wheelbarrows can also be used as a lawn accent, planter, or garden ornament. Find an old wheelbarrow made of wood and fill the barrow with a mixture of dirt and potting soil. Buy flowers from your local nursery and plant them in the wheelbarrow. Place the planter as an accent to your patio or porch. If you plan to make the wheelbarrow a permanent fixture that will be outside at all times, weatherproof the barrow before planting flowers, and bore holes in the bottom to allow drainage.

Author Bio

April Reinhardt

An admin­istrator for a mutual fund man­age­ment firm, April deals with the writ­ten word daily. She loves to write and plans to author a memoir in the near future. April attend­ed More­head State Uni­ver­sity to pursue a BA degree in Ele­men­tary Edu­ca­tion. ...

MORE FROM APRIL

Cleaning a Rifle

In order to preserve effective shooting and maintain safety, cleaning your rifle regularly is an absolute necessity. ...

Discover More

Cabbage Rolls with Warm Chunky Applesauce

An old German tradition, cabbage and apples have been paired for centuries. This dinner of cabbage rolls complemented by ...

Discover More

Installing a Pocket Door

Although pocket door kits include most of the hardware you will need to install your door, you may need to buy a handle. ...

Discover More
More Gardening Tips

Planter Liners

When you are looking to do a planter gardening, don't forget to grab the planter liners. Planter liners are a great tool ...

Discover More

Storing Garden Tools

Garden tools can cost a lot of money if you find that you have to replace them each season because you forgot where you ...

Discover More

Gardening Tools for Children

Gardening is a fun activity that can be done with the whole family. Purchase gardening tools made for children so your ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Receive an e-mail several times each week with a featured gardening tip. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is eight less than 8?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Receive an e-mail several times each week with a featured gardening tip. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)