Beginner's Guide to Gardening Tools

So you want to start gardening? Me too! This will be my first full season of gardening, but I got a bit of a head start last summer & fall. I also have a Mom who has two green thumbs (and green index fingers, and middle fingers, and ring fingers...), and although I loathed helping her in the garden as a kid (dirt? worms? no thanks), I still managed to pick up a thing or two.

There has been SO much interest in gardening during my weekly #AskMorganAnything series, and one of the most recent questions were my recommendations for beginner's gardening tools, which is such a great question! I was so luck that our previous owner ended up leaving most of her gardening tools behind, so we had to purchase very little in that respect. But I've since added to my collection and am also looking forward to replacing a few.


So here's my roundup of the must-have tools to get started gardening. Whether its flower beds, a vegetable garden or just a few potted-plants, these tools are a good place to start. And at the bottom of the list


Hand Tools

These will be a necessity for any type of gardening - so start here!


  • Trowel - this is the classic hand shovel that you use to dig holes for your plants. I love the Ames brand - they've got a gel grip that make them comfy/easy to hold.

  • Cultivator - this handy "fork-like" tool helps to "cultivate" aka mix-up the soil before you plant. This one matches the trowel linked above.

  • Transplanter - you'll need this for slicing through roots when you move a plant from one place to another.

This handy set includes all three of the above :)


Rakes & Shovels

These will be needed if you're planting in any sort of garden bed, including a raised vegetable garden



  • Small digging shovel - this is great for digging larger holes for mature plants that you might buy from the garden center or are transplanting from other places in your yard (vs. planting seeds/bulbs)

  • Garden spade - a flat shovel that is handy for transplanting larger plants or for moving dirt

  • Garden rake - good for spreading soil/dirt evenly across a bed


Cutting Tools

Regular pruning shears are a must for any gardener, even potted plants or window boxes. The other two are necessary for larger shrubs or trees



  • Pruning shears - these will be your best friend for pruning, aka cutting off the dead stuff

  • Hedge shears - for larger plants, like hedges, these guys are great for trimming and shaping (I actually don't even have these, but my Mom informed me this weekend that I should!)

  • Lopper - this is like a giant version of your pruning shears, used for larger bushes or trees. Only 2nd to hedge trimmer, this is your best friend for taming unruly shrubs or small trees.


Gloves & other necessities



  • Gardening gloves - unless you like touch worms? I prefer ones that have a rubber palm so I have a better grip on my tools.

  • Kneeling pad - a necessity for long days in the garden

  • Wheelbarrow - to move dirt and to transport your plants & soil from the car to the garden! Although a metal one will last you longer, the plastic ones are much lighter for little old me (and more affordable). Protip: Get it delivered - its a pain to fit in the car!

  • Hose nozzle - make sure to look for one with "mist" and "flat" settings. These are best for delicate, newly place plants. This is the one I have and it works great!


Take it to the next level...



  • I bought this standup garden tiller to cultivate my raised vegetable bed last week, and it was a game changer. Also a great arm work out.

  • Watering directly to the soil via drip system is best for vegetable gardens. This system has everything you need to set it up (though you may need to add more hose)

  • If you're re-doing a garden bed and need to cut through roots, a hoe would be helpful


I hope these suggestions help on your gardening journey! Keep up with mine by following me on Instagram & Pinterest.


As an Amazon Associate & a member of other affiliate programs, I may earn a commission from qualifying purchases when you use the links in the post above. All opinions & recommendations remain my own.

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