Having the right tool can make or break any project, and that includes when you begin cultivating your garden. Many people believe that the only cultivation tools around are shovels, and maybe an occasional hoe. The truth is that while shovels and hoes are indeed helpful, there are several other kinds of tools that can be used as well. Here is a brief guide to different kinds of cultivation tools, and how you can use them around the garden. After all, how can you know what your options are without a little bit of study?
- Hoes. Traditionally, there are two types of hoes that people use around the garden. The first is the Dutch hoe, which has a flat, D-shaped blade. The second are draw hoes, which typically have a swan style neck. There is a difference in how these hoes are used, and that is that Dutch hoes are primarily used for weeding, and the draw hoes are usually used for sowing seeds.
- Rakes. Rakes are actually quite useful when cultivating soil. However, they are not the same kind of rakes that you usually use to pick up fallen leaves. These rakes will have between 10 and 16 strong tines for teeth, and are used to seed bed preparation. A general rule of thumb is that the more teeth that a garden rake has, then the finer the soil will be when you are finished.
- Forks and spades. Forks and spades are tools that are used the world over to dig, and turn the soil that you are using for your garden. There are all kinds of styles out there that you can use, some of which are designed for digging, while others are designed more specifically for transferring soil or other materials around.
- Trowels and hand forks. Trowels and hand forks are simply smaller forms of the larger forks and spades that most people use. These types of tools are usually more ideally suited for fine or precision work. When choosing these types of tools, make sure that you choose one that has a sturdy neck, and which has few indentations or channels. Those channels or indentations can often prove particularly difficult to clean.
- Mechanical tools. Mechanical tools include things like rototillers, and other types of mechanical cultivators. Most of these machines operate off of a gasoline powered engine, though some other types are starting to be developed. The biggest difference in these types of tools lies in the number of arms, blades, and the orientation of those blades. Considering that these tools are usually gasoline powered, that means that they are fairly powerful. When choosing one make sure that you chose one that isn't overly powerful, and that you can use or control easily.