Sharpening Your Garden Tools

Do you remember how easy it was to cut branches with your secateurs, or how easy your shovel used to go throught the soil when you fisrt bought them?


The tools we use for our gardening work are there to make our life easy. Sometimes we think that when we buy them that we don’t have to do anything more to them so that they continue to work efficiently for us. Often we just leave it a long time between tool maintenance.

All tools need maintenance to make the work load easy for us. After all that is why we bought them.

Open secator - Secateur ouvert

Image via Wikipedia

What happens if you decide to undertake a major garden renovation, with blunt tools and at the end of the day, you find yourself trashed. Usually your work could have been easier and you end the day feeling not as tired just by sharpening your tools.

This post is more about making the work lighter for you rather than overworking yourself with an inefficient, or a tool not properly maintained.

If you are a professional in your trade you generally buy the best tools because you know how easy they make your work. It is amazing the difference between the cheap tools and the expensive, the work you can achieve with so much ease.

When digging for example, cheap shovels don’t cut through roots as easy as expensive ones. The steel may be thicker and tougher. Also a good sharpen makes it even easier.

Palms roots for example usually cause us the most grief when digging. So let’s see how we can help ourselves.

Our tool list is: a pruning saw, secateurs, a garden fork, a post hole shovel, a mattock and a crowbar.

Pruning saws: Bow saws tend to bend easy especially as the branch starts leaning or you don’t cut straight. The best saws are toughened steel arched pruning saws like a Bahco or Wolfgarten.

Secateurs: most secatuers between $10 and over. The trick is to sharpen them regularly with a medium file. Already your cutting is easier and you are saving your hands a lot of stress.


Garden fork: cheap and nasty

will never do. Why buy a Chinese special when you can bend it in your first gardening crusade. I’ve done it also. Buy a good one starting from $35 and make sure the points are all pointy for easy entry and digging.

Post hole shovel: Cheap steel just isn’t strong. Buy a cyclone for example and keep the tip sharp. Put an angle grinder over your top edge and then a slighter angle over the bottom. You with feel the ease of your work. Palm roots starting getting cut like a knife through butter.

Angle grinder

Image via Wikipedia

discs for angle grinder

Image via Wikipedia

Mattock: Same as post hole shovel. A sharpened mattock makes your work very easy.

Crowbar: They are useful to cut roots and wood like an axe when you have no room to move (between a tree and a fence, 20cm) Sharpen your cutting edges with the angle grinder.

Now you have your tools sharpened it’s time to attack the garden.

If you have any questions on the material presented here please feel free to comment. Any others comments will not be included

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