The best shovels you can buy for gardening
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- Every gardener needs a shovel to dig holes, break up soil, remove tough weeds, and edge lawns and trenches.
- The Fiskars Long-Handle Round-Point Steel Digging Shovel makes it much easier to accomplish all of these tasks, and it won't dig a hole in your budget.
While a shovel is undeniably not a sexy or exciting purchase, this utilitarian workhorse belongs in the tool shed of every gardener, whether that garden is a few potted plants, or an extensive vegetable garden. The only question is which type of shovel or spade you need? Serious gardeners will likely have more than one. Of course, there are a lot of different types of digging tools out there, which can make it confusing.
Before going much further, we want to define a few terms that are often used interchangeably, but each has its own specific meaning.
- As a general rule, garden shovels have rounded, concave blades that come to a point. Shovels are mostly used to dig holes in dirt, but are also handy for moving soil, snow, or other loose materials.
- Typically, garden spades have slightly concave blades with a flat edge, and while not so good for digging holes, they are useful for cutting through sod, edging your lawn, or marking a trench.
- Garden scoops have wide, flat blades that rise up into small "walls" along the sides. This is the tool of choice for moving mulch, compost, dead leaves, hay, or other lightweight loose materials.
- Trowels are small garden tools designed for one-handed use. They have a long, shovel-shaped blade and a short handle. Use your trowel for transplanting or digging in containers, making small holes in the garden for new plants, or removing individual weeds.
If your shovel-buying strategy has consisted of choosing the cheapest tool on the shelf, we're here to tell you that while there is certainly no reason to break the budget on a shovel, it's also true that you generally get what you pay for, and a quality garden tool should last you for many years if taken care of.
That's why we decided to do the research for you, and gather up this list of the best shovels and spades out there for a variety of uses. While we think the Fiskars Long-Handle Round-Point Steel Digging Shovel is the best garden shovel overall, we also recommend several others that serve different purposes.
Here are the best garden shovels and spades you can buy:
- Best shovel overall: Fiskars Long-Handle Round-Point Steel Digging Shovel
- Best short garden shovel: Bond Mini D-Handle Shovel
- Best garden spade: Fiskars D-Handle Garden Spade
- Best garden scoop: Ames D-Handle Aluminum Scoop
- Best garden trowel: Wilcox All Pro 14-Inch Trowel
Updated on 04/26/2019 by Les Shu: Updated pricing, links, and formatting. Added related buying guides for gardening products.
Read on in the slides below to check out our top picks.
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The best garden shovel overall
The best short garden shovel
The best garden spade
The best garden scoop
The best garden trowel
Check out our guide to the best gardening tools
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