For our October 2012 Washington Gardener Reader Contest, we asked folks to tell us their “favorite gardening tool.” Here are some of our favorite entries:
“I saw the contest in the current issue of Washington Gardener Enews and felt compelled to tell you about my scythe!” wrote Dean Mosher of Annandale, VA. “The European scythe is, hands down, my favorite gardening tool. Not only are they beautifully crafted hand tools, they’ve remained in use since about the dawn of agriculture. In fact, the scythe is the tool that defined what we know as the acre: the area a man can mow (using a scythe) in a single day. Mine was made in Austria by the Schröckenfux company who have been in operation since 1540. Unlike the modern gas powered push mower the scythe helps me create usable hay from my half-acre lawn rather than pulverized grass pulp. Although they require some skill and practice to use, to do so regularly keeps me in fighting shape. ‘If you keep the blade honed and peened, and know how to use one, the scythe is perhaps the most efficient and effective tool for cutting grass ever developed,’ from Why Every Permaculturist Should Own a Scythe by Paul Kingsnorth (www.permaculture.co.uk). It is quiet, simple, run on breakfast, and promotes inner peace and serenity as I work. . . or, allows me to cut the lawn while I meditate.”
“My favorite gardening tool is my cobra head weeder. It makes weeding so much less miserable, “Madeline Caliendo, Washington, DC.”
Lucy Goszkowski of Annapolis, MD, said. “My favorite gardening tool is my trowel with inch marks on the blade. Use it all the time for planting depth and spacing transplants. “
“My favorite gardening tool is the sturdy, wood-handled Craftsman shovel designed for kids,” wrote Ruth H. Axelrod, Frederick, MD. “It is also perfect for women! Light and easy to use, it is the perfect size for most transplanting and moving small loads of dirt around. For really small jobs, I use a trowel, but this shovel allows me to stand and put my weight on it to open a hole in the mot-always-soft ground. I hate it when I have to switch to a regular, large and heavy men's shovel for larger jobs like planting shrubs and digging up clusters perennials to be divided; of course, sometimes, I can persuade my husband to do that part of the chores ;-).”
Tom Pluecker of Annapolis, MD shared, “My favorite garden tool has always been the Corona by-pass clippers. I keep them in a holster and use them all day for things that I am sure they were not intended to be used for. Once when I broke them I sent them back and received a new pair by return mail. Wonderful products and wonderful customer service.”
“My favorite gardening tool by far is a Corona "razor tooth" pruning saw,” said George Graine of Falls Church, VA. “The teeth are designed for precise cutting of small and medium sized branches up to 6" diameter. This ergonomically designed saw folds up so that it is only 8 1/2" and easily fits into a pocket. This is a don't leave home without it tool!”
Sarah Urdaneta of Berwyn Heights, MD, said, “My favorite gardening tool is a soil knife. I use it for everything, including planting, weeding, dividing plants, making furrows to plant seeds and lots of other garden tasks. It's tough and unbreakable with a comfortable handle that's orange so it's easy to find in the weeds, which is a definite bonus!”
Katie Rapp of Gaithersburg, MD, said, “Favorite garden tool and why: Sharp clippers! I am a big believer in naturalistic pruning and there is nothing more important than sharp clippers!”
Paul Lazar of Silver Spring, MD, wrote, “I use my pruner more than any other tool. I always keep it in my pocket while I garden. I tried to use a holster but it wasn't as
“My favorite tool in the garden, if I must pick one, is my long handled garden claw. It chops hard dirt, it cultivates and mixes the soil; it makes small furrows and it weeds quite handily. My claw must be over 60 years old,” said John P. Haslinger of Silver Spring, MD.
Sue Hauser of Kensington, MD said, “My favorite gardening tool is my short round-point shovel with a D handle. The proportions are perfect for my aging body. It fits in the car
trunk. It digs a great hole.”
We selected two winners at random. They are: Dean Mosher of Annandale, VA and Sarah Urdaneta of Berwyn Heights, MD. Congratulations!
Each receives a red Coronoa Tools t-shirts (size XL) and garden clippers from Corona Tools. An authentic American brand, Corona tools were born in the orange groves of California in the 1920s. Since then, generations of agriculturists, gardeners, landscapers, arborists, and construction professionals have turned to Corona to find high-quality tools that work as hard as they do. They know that Corona’s iconic red handles are an immediate symbol of quality and long-lasting durability. Learn more about CoronaTools at http://coronatoolsusa.com/.