When I was a kid, I used to be really lazy to write.  Handwriting class was such a torture for me.  My classmates would be done and all set to go home, while I stayed behind slaving away over my ABCs. This worried my mom so much so she started buying the most beautiful pencils and notebooks for me. Classic child-psychology at its finest. I started looking forward to writing everyday because I was so excited to use my new things. I ended up being one of the fastest writers in Grade 1.

When I started gardening, I felt like a first-grader all over again. I couldn’t wait to buy all the tools I needed. You don’t have to buy everything at the same time. Here are the first six essential tools needed to start your own small garden.


Before you plant anything, you have to open and enrich the soil. A spading fork is very much like a pitchfork but with a shorter handle and wider tines. This tool is used to plow into solid soil to break up the ground.


The soil needs to be nourished and watered. The hoe is the tool you can you use to penetrate the soil with water and nutrients. It is most useful for weeding and cultivating the soil.                                                                                                 


 A watering can is essential in keeping your plants healthy.  It is best to choose one with a long nozzle because it allows the water to flow very gently and it will help you with those hard-to reach areas. Look for the one with a detachable spray head so you can also use it for other tasks, such as watering young seedlings.                                      


 A shovel is used for digging. Choose what size is best for your specific project.  Eventually you can buy a big round-ended shovel for larger digging projects, such as planting shrubs and trees.


 After turning the soil, before you start planting, use a bow rake to level the soil. This tool is also used to remove large chunks of earth or rocks from the soil. You may also use the flat side of the bow rake to smoothen out the soil in preparation for planting.


 For pruning, shaping and removing leaves and branches, you need a pair of garden shears.  More than anything, it is important for you to choose one that fits your hand most comfortably.