My favorite garden tools | Pruners, spades & more | The Impatient Gardener

My favorite garden tools | Pruners, spades & more | The Impatient Gardener

I’m sharing all my favorite garden tools. I have a garage full of tools, but these are the things I use and look for regularly.

This is NOT a sponsored video! Items that I received for review or for other projects are noted below. I bought everything else.

Some of these tools are pretty expensive. Let me be clear here: YOU DON’T NEED EXPENSIVE TOOLS TO GARDEN. I’m just a gadget geek who really loves playing with tools and instead of a closet full of shoes (note the flip flops) I have a garage full of gardening tools. 

In addition to the tools I mention here, some brands that offer less expensive but very good options are Corona and Fiskars. 

#GardenTools #TheImpatientGardener

Here are links to all the tools I mention (or a close substitute for items that are no longer available). Prices given in the video are current as of September 2019, but prices change all the time (I bought many of these pruners for far less than these items are currently selling for). 

Some affiliate links may appear below. I may make a small commission if you purchase through these links. Thanks for your support. You can see all my favorite products on my Amazon storefront:

– A.M. Leonard Deluxe Soil Knife:
– Sneeboer Planting Trowel:
– Troy-Bilt Telescoping Bypass Loppers (provided for a project):
– Garrett Wade Folding Pruning Saw (provided for a project):
– Bahco Ergo Bypass Pruner:
– ARS VS-8XZ Pruner:
– Niwaki GR Pro Secateurs:
– Niwaki Garden Snips:
– Niwaki Garden Shears:
– Atlas Nitrile Gloves (pack of 6):
– Leather rose gloves (similar):
– Sneeboer Ladies Spade:
– Sneeboer Royal Dutch Hoe:
– Expandable rake (similar):
– Bahco Lawn Shears:

My name is Erin and I love sharing inspiration and information with real-life gardeners. I live and garden in southeastern Wisconsin, zone 5. 

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  1. Lori H on August 2, 2021 at 9:17 pm

    Just happened upon your video. Love it! Very enjoyable and informative. Subscribed.

  2. pieter on August 2, 2021 at 9:17 pm

    You shoulf buy a felco 2 or 8 they are like the best

  3. Francis Faustino on August 2, 2021 at 9:17 pm

    I just need some clarification. Those Niwaki shears all look like Okatsune shears. Is Niwaki a Japanese store in the UK and they’re selling Okatsune shears re-branded with their name? If that’s the case, you wouldn’t have to buy it from the UK. Okatsune brand is readily available here in the US (

  4. concreteartist001 on August 2, 2021 at 9:17 pm

    Sorry…the ending is the best part. Love the drooly dogs even though the video was very informative.

  5. Cathy Sahlfeld on August 2, 2021 at 9:18 pm

    I always think abt who will have my garden tools when I’m dead. My most beloved tool is a wood handled dandelion tool I got for $1 at an antique store.

  6. Shanna Heckler on August 2, 2021 at 9:21 pm

    I think I’ll do it myself this week. I just got instructions from Woodglut and I’m ready for it: D

  7. FrankEdavidson on August 2, 2021 at 9:25 pm

    Big spade head = lazy person’s burden.
    They don’t make spades long enough for tall people. I thought the Dutch ones might be a bit longer. I’m not aware of Serbian brands (also a population with tall average heights).
    I prefer forged carbon steel long-handled tools. Carbon steel is much stronger than stainless steel, particularly any welds. I enjoy looking after them and still use my grandfather’s tools Bulldog, Spear and Jackson
    A two year old stainless steel rake snapped on me the other day.
    Jakoti shears – meant for sheep shearing (I got a selection of livestock tags when I ordered them, lol) but great for detailing grass round clothes poles etc, detailing topiary and hedging, chopping up handfuls of green stems for compost, trimming green manure.
    Felco 903 diamond sharpener – I just wish the ‘+’ holsters with the sharpener holder was out when I bought my holster.
    Builders trowels – I just already had them
    Vintage carbon steel hand fork with twisted tines and wooden handle – much better than the flat pressed pattern ones in my heavy soil.

    I find the Japanese hand e.g. pruners a bit little for my hands.
    Much of the developing world subsistence-farms and gardens with one tool, may be a mattock in one area, may be a machete in other areas.

  8. Sharon Perry on August 2, 2021 at 9:26 pm

    Loved the garden tools! My favourite is a Corona Clipper ratcheting bypass pruner.

  9. John Jude on August 2, 2021 at 9:26 pm

    To get the seedlings from them plants out of the 72 ct packages,
    I took the cheap egg flipper cut the flipper’s flat flipper off at the cut the flipper’s from the handle shaft and hat the cut end then mushroom the shaft like a spoon shape and file the cut end for safety
    I find this handy to get the young plants to plant

  10. Barbara G. on August 2, 2021 at 9:27 pm

    hahaha, love the reason the top of your head is missing. So funny!! Great video!!!

  11. kathy p on August 2, 2021 at 9:29 pm

    Sorry about your head!

  12. Matthew Rix on August 2, 2021 at 9:30 pm

    Naughty dog!

  13. Bobbie Jo Fouts on August 2, 2021 at 9:32 pm

    Thanks for sharing the quality brands you know about. I’ll check them out. I’m very much in agreement with you that a quality tool makes all the difference in working pleasure, less fatigue and wear on the hands. I have a garden trowel from Gardener’s Supply made in Holland that I always reach for because it’s made better than the cheap ones, has a comfortable wood handle and has a much better sharp, carbon blade. I should be able to hand this down, too. I suspect that it’s not quite the quality of your trowel, but it’s still good.

  14. lokesh green on August 2, 2021 at 9:33 pm

    I am a canadian gardener with decades of experience, the other tools I wouldn’t be without are fiskars power gear shears for easy cutting of thicker material like lavender, rosemary softer steel so need more sharpening than the niwaki which i have lee valley version of they now have they with orange metal handles, silky saws are like your garret wade saw in avariety of sizes, a stirrup/hula hoe is great for emerging weeds doesn’t move as much soil as a dutch hoe, like you say a sharp tool is the key to easy gardening. was happy to see you lawn edging shears your the only other person I’ve seen use them. my ergo bahco’s are my favorite secauters stay sharper and in adjustment better thaan my felco’s . the fiskars pruning stick is also a great long handled pruner

  15. Bob Louie on August 2, 2021 at 9:34 pm

    I’m big on tools, I currently love the Cobrahead weeder and the long handle version. For lawn edging I’m big on using my Echo trimmer held vertically. Requires some strength but the result is fast and really clean.
    I love your overall approach to gardening, probably because it reinforces how I garden.

  16. J J on August 2, 2021 at 9:34 pm

    i thought i was the only one who wore mismatched gloves! so glad i found your channel!

  17. Annemieke Wielinga on August 2, 2021 at 9:36 pm

    De Wit and Sneeboer make me proud to be a Dutch gardener

  18. A T on August 2, 2021 at 9:37 pm

    This may be one of the better review videos I’ve watched on YouTube for sheer enjoyableness

  19. Lola Rose on August 2, 2021 at 9:37 pm

    aahahahha love the "public announcement about half the head…." cheers

  20. A C on August 2, 2021 at 9:37 pm

    Really helpful. I have watched this video several times and plan to give a few of the items a try. Love all of your videos. I live not far from you in northeast Illinois and all of your tips and advice are very relevant to my situation. My only suggestion is MORE videos!

  21. Frank Brown on August 2, 2021 at 9:38 pm

    Haven’t you tried Felco pruners?

  22. Mark Roberts on August 2, 2021 at 9:40 pm

    Very good review of great tools. Niwaki doesn’t actually make most of those tools. It would be good to find out the names of the manufacturers like Oketsune or Tobisho,, because many are sold in the US. Also, it would be great if you did a "good" episode on doing hand sharpening to create a truly sharp edge. This is on a water stone, diamond plate, or ceramic stone up to at least 1,000 grit minimum. These work far better than any of the cheap hand drawn edge sharpeners most videos show. Those create a poor edge at best.

  23. MikoCatqueen on August 2, 2021 at 9:41 pm

    My Hori Hori knife is my favorite most used tool. I use it to dig holes, dig up weeds, and cut open bags.

  24. A Rodriguez on August 2, 2021 at 9:42 pm

    This is my second video and I am laughing. You’re so funny, great job.

  25. Christopher Fairs on August 2, 2021 at 9:43 pm

    What both Felco and Bahco have built in their secateurs and long-handled loppers is a tapered anvil tip. This enables much easier cutting in confined spaces.

  26. Paulette Daniels on August 2, 2021 at 9:45 pm

    I have arthritis in my hands, so a ratcheting pruner is a lifesaver.

  27. jojoc170 on August 2, 2021 at 9:45 pm

    as a professional gardener ill recommend to check out silky zübat saw and felco nr 8. those are my most used and go to tools

  28. Koreen Cole on August 2, 2021 at 9:48 pm

    Love your style! Right to the point. Thank you.

  29. Joanne L on August 2, 2021 at 9:49 pm

    Love your sense of humour! I’m a new fan and look forward to watching all your past videos. Great info. Thank you!

  30. Kathy on August 2, 2021 at 9:49 pm

    Favorite tool an old steak knife. Also useful, opens bags, digs out tough roots, edges stepping stones. The list goes on and on.

  31. Montalbano on August 2, 2021 at 9:51 pm

    Test Okatsune they use 60-61 Rockwell steel to stay sharp a long time. They are wicked sharp and can be resharpened with a Japanese wet stone they also provide.
    60-61 Rockwell is in the realm of the the absolute high end Japanese knifes.
    The cost about 43 euros here in Europe.
    And when a company makes specific cutters for three schools of ikebana they are traditional Japanese as they can get.

  32. Jemstone 6 on August 2, 2021 at 9:52 pm


  33. Chris Rutz on August 2, 2021 at 9:52 pm

    You are not weird at all for your liking of gardening tools that cause playing in the dirt to be fun and easy. Thanks for passing on your some of your tool likes.

  34. Лунтик Ци on August 2, 2021 at 9:53 pm

    Ars pruner has absorbers, Niwaki Pro hasn’t. It is essential for arm, when you cut not thin branches.
    Ars VA-7 – esiest cut ever.

  35. Janita Panos on August 2, 2021 at 9:54 pm

    Hi Erin, thanks for your tool recommendations-very helpful. I’m wondering if you sharpen your tools yourself and if so, how do you do this? Thanks

  36. Mariani Lim on August 2, 2021 at 9:55 pm

    poor dog.

  37. Sarah Alton on August 2, 2021 at 9:56 pm

    Just found you!! You’re kinda my new She-ro!! Love your tools, I have new goals!! Lol.😎✌🤟💚

  38. Bodie Stevens on August 2, 2021 at 10:00 pm

    Silly hand saw are the best I have found hands down

  39. Greg Zilis on August 2, 2021 at 10:01 pm

    I have met your demands pupper, now free Fergus!!! Sooo cute!!!

  40. Robert smee on August 2, 2021 at 10:02 pm

    CORONA pruners…

  41. NipItInTheBud100 on August 2, 2021 at 10:03 pm

    Nothing beats felco pruning shears!

  42. grrttlc2 on August 2, 2021 at 10:03 pm

    If you like the Niwaki, try Okatsune; Cheaper, they come on small sizes and I think youll find they otherwise have all the things you like about the Niwaki.

  43. Tracy Gonzalez-Rogers on August 2, 2021 at 10:05 pm

    This was a very informative video. Just what I like. Anyway you could do one on tool cleaning and maintenance particularly blade sharpening? Thank you so.

  44. Cathy holmes on August 2, 2021 at 10:06 pm

    Yay! ATLAS!

  45. Mindy's Place on August 2, 2021 at 10:07 pm

    I am here to tell you that you don’t need fancy tools. I use a shovel and a hand trowel for the most part, but I am going to the hardware store today to pick up one of those garden knives and a spade. This is the second video I’ve watched that recommend them and making my life easier at this point is a bonus. My garden is huge and I can use all the help I can get.

  46. Alice Potter on August 2, 2021 at 10:08 pm

    I’ve been looking at gardening knives lately. Guess I’ll be ordering one later!

  47. CLTserendipity on August 2, 2021 at 10:12 pm

    Why didn’t you teach people how to sharpen their pruners and loppers? That would be really helpful and useful info. Also, it’s easy to paint the handles of all your tools orange. Makes them easy to find and put away after a job.

  48. stuart Anderson on August 2, 2021 at 10:12 pm

    I share your enthusiasm for garden tools, especially. Dutch and English, however, again like you, over the years a number of them have stayed in the ground, waiting to be found. The tool I tend to use most of all is a Dewit long handle trowel, and swivel handle Felco pruner, which I have used for the last twenty one years.

  49. James Halleron on August 2, 2021 at 10:15 pm

    Wow, A gardener with a sense of humor. Loved being schooled on the different pruning tools and their uses. Loved those edger clippers you showed. I just Liked and Subscribed. Thank you

  50. Marilyn Mourdock on August 2, 2021 at 10:15 pm

    Have you ever tried using a weed puller called a Weed Hound? You hold it about waist high, step on a plunger that encircles the weed and then you pull it out of the ground. It only really works when the ground is soft, but it is great for weeds like dandelion or plantain.

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