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10 must have tools

Whether you are a seasoned gardener or just starting out its essential you have the right tools for the job. As using the wrong tools for the job can make long work of what should be quick and easy tasks. This in turn can become very off-putting and you may feel you do not want to return to those garden jobs again. To ensure this doesn’t happen we have put together a list of 10 must have tools.

stainless steel spades lined up

Here at Kent & Stowe we have a tool to make every task an easier and more enjoyable one. Our advice is always to start with the basics that you will use time and time again. Most of our tools are available in both stainless and carbon steel.

So here are our top 10 must have Kent & Stowe tools:

1. Digging Fork or Border Fork

ks garden life digging fork

Used for general digging, aerating and for lifting up plants. Make sure that the fork is suitable for your height and able to pick it up easily to avoid any injury. Forks come in two sizes, a standard digging fork and a border fork for smaller areas. We also have a smaller fork, which is perfectly sized. Our Garden Life Stainless Steel Digging Fork is the lighter and more compact version of our full size Digging Fork to help you dig for longer. The fork is practical and easy to use and gives increased maneuverability around the garden. This fork is ideal for gardeners who might struggle with heavier tools. It is also great for tighter spaces and beds and borders gardening

2. Digging Spade or Border Spade

Used for general digging, cultivating, soil turning and breaking up the soil. Choose a spade that suitable for your height to reduce back strain (a standard spade is fine for those measuring 5’6” and over). Use a border spade for smaller areas or smaller tasks. But also consider the weight of the spade and whether our Garden Life Stainless Steel Spade might be more suitable. Again lighter and more compact than our full size version, it’s easy to use around the garden.

kent & stowe digging spade lifestyle

3. Weeding Knife for slicing through weeds in patio slabs. This weeding knife has a 45-degree angled blade with the inside enabling you to cut the tops of weeds off easily. It’s also great for scraping out moss from in between paving stones. This tool comes in a full size long handled version as well as a easy to use hand size.

4. Oscillating Hoe for clearing weeds in borders. This hoe delivers maneuverability as well as agility with the upright luxury of a long shafted tool. It is the perfect height for easy working eliminating the need for bending therefore reduces back strain. The unique part to this tool is its swivel head action with a double edge blade. Use it in a push-pull motion to unroot weeds effortlessly.

kent & stowe oscillating hoe in use

5. The Hand Trowel is what you’ll use when you need to dig and loosen soil in containers and the front of borders. You can also use it while cultivating to dig out any weeds. An extremely versatile tool that is also available in our Garden Life and Kids ranges.

The Capability Hand Trowel, inspired by the work of Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown, one of England’s greatest gardeners. It has been designed in his belief that in gardening everything could be improved. Therefore, this trowel has the functionality to endure many gardening tasks. It has a multitude of functions including a hammer for hammering canes and posts, as well as a serrated edge for weeding.

capability trowel

6. Hand Fork for use in beds and borders. It is ideal for close work around plants, raking the soil and breaking up the surface to create a loose, fine tilth ready for planting. Available in both our lighter range of Garden Life and Kids. We also have a longer handled version to eliminate bending and stretching over while gardening with our Border Hand Fork and our Stainless Steel Long Handled Fork

hand fork   long handled fork

7. Lawn & Leaf Rake is a spring tine rake which gently scrapes the surface of your grass, so is perfect for raking up dead leaves in autumn and winter. It has 16 steel tines to make light work of any clearing job. Its also available in our lighter Garden Life range.

New for 2022 is our 3 in 1 Leaf Rake. This unique rake allows you to rake up leaves from anywhere in the garden with ease. It has an extra wide head for clearing large areas, along with detachable heads which turn into hand leaf grabbers to pick up all the leaves you have swept. You can also detach one of the heads and use it as a narrower rake for clearing around tight spaces like beds and borders.

kent and stowe 3 in 1 leaf rake  kent and stowe 3 in 1 leaf rake  kent & stowe 3 in 1 rake in use in border

Cutting Tools

It’s extremely important to use the right type of secateurs cuts when pruning. Otherwise you could bruise live stems or blunt your blades. There are two types of cut – Anvil and Bypass Cut. If you want to learn more about the different cuts please read our article Anvil Vs. Bypass Cut

8. Bypass Secateurs for the pruning of live green stems. These are the best general all-purpose secateurs and you’ll find them useful for pruning roses and other shrubs. They cut with a scissor action with one blade going across the other. This ensures that live green stems are easily pruned without damage. Using an anvil here would certainly bruise the stem and could even stunt growth.

Our Eversharp™ Bypass Secateurs are the sharpest, longest lasting, frictionless and anti-rust blade on the market. This new technology blade ensures these secateurs will stand the test of time.

eversharp all purpose secateurs in hands

9. Anvil Secateurs for the pruning of dead wood stems. This blade cuts like a knife onto a chopping block, so its perfect for hard and dead wood. If you used bypass on these types of stems it would certainly start to wear away and blunt most blades. Its essential therefore to have both types in your shed for your garden maintenance. Our Eversharp™ Anvil Secateurs are ultra hard, ultra sharp and are totally rust proof – guaranteed to last for 10 years.

eversharp hard wood secateurs in use

10. Loppers to effortlessly prune larger green live branches. Loppers are perfect for cutting off large branches, or branches that are out of hands reach or too large to cut with secateurs, requiring two hands. Bypass Loppers should be used on green live stems (with the same principle applying anvil v bypass cut). Our SureCut All Purpose Extra Power Loppers  feature a Reflex Energy System which means they have rubber bumpers that absorb impact and facilitate a gentle rebound. This guarantees maximum comfort and minimum effort whilst cutting. The high quality carbon steel blades are seamlessly integrated into sturdy yet lightweight handles for a superior cutting experience.

kent and stowe surecut extra power all purpose loppers in use

For those who prefer more lightweight tools, our Garden Life All Purpose Mini Loppers are a more lighter and more compact alternative to our full size loppers.

kent and stowe garden life all purpose mini loppers lifestyle in use

With these 10 tools you are ready to start gardening. Remember to keep your tools in top condition by cleaning after use and storing in your garden shed or garage rather than leaving them outside. Over the seasons your collection of garden tools will grow, as will your confidence to try new tasks and tools.

All of our Kent & Stowe tools come with full guarantees for piece of mind.

To buy any of our tools online click here.


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