The six best garden hand trowels, from steel to plastic

A small garden spade will help you tackle any number of jobs including digging up weeds and potting out bedding plants.

Highly versatile and necessary no matter how small or big your garden, a decent garden trowel is always a good investment.

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But once you start er, digging, you’ll find that there are so many to choose from – metal, plastic, coated, scooped, pointed – it’s quite the minefield.

It’s easy to get hung up on the detail (did you know a trowel’s neck is called a tang?) but whatever brand or design you choose, aim to buy one that’s versatile enough for all sorts of garden tasks, from digging up weeds, to planting bulbs and breaking down clods of earth.

We’ve rounded up some fine examples at all price points to help you choose the perfect little spade for your needs.

This article and featured products have been independently chosen by Sun journalists. It contains links which are ads, and if you click a link and buy a product we will earn revenue.

1. Spear & Jackson

Spear & Jackson garden trowel
This high-quality trowel is designed for transplanting plants
  1. (AD) Elements transplanting trowel, £4.99 from Amazon – buy here

This Spear & Jackson transplanting trowel, with its dark hammer-finished blade is a real beauty.

And it should look good for years – the blade is made from epoxy-coated steel which resists scratches and damage from humidity and alkaline soils, and the handle is finished in a weather-proof lacquer.

Handy markings at two, three and four inches will let you know how deep you’re planting.

2. Fiskars

Fiskars garden trowel
The corrosion-proof Fiskars garden trowel can be safely cleaned with water
  1. (AD) Fiskars fibreglass planting trowel, £7.07 from Amazon – buy here

The Finns know a thing or two about bad weather, so if you’re fed up with using rusty trowels, you should know that this fibreglass-reinforced model from Finnish brand Fiskars, is both corrosion-resistant and weatherproof.

Perfect for allotment and greenhouse gardening, the trowel is also light, comfortable to use and pretty good to look at too.

3. Burgon & Ball

Burgon & Ball transplanter trowel
This garden trowel is covered by a lifetime guarantee
  • Transplanter trowel, £13.95 from Burgon & Ball – buy here

Specially designed for planting out young plants into jam-packed borders, this dedicated transplanter trowel comes complete with engraved with depth markings – very useful in bulb-planting season!

With a high-quality stainless steel blade and ergonomically-angled tang, it’s endorsed by the RHS and should give you many years of faithful garden service.

4. Sneeboer & Zn

Great Dixter trowel
This unusually-shaped trowel was designed by a famous British gardener
  • Great Dixter trowel, £40.65 from Sneeboer & Zn – buy here

The East Sussex house and garden of Great Dixter was the family home of the renowned horticulturalist-writer Christopher Lloyd, and this is his famous long-bladed trowel design.

The narrow blade allows you to squeeze into the tightest spots between other plants and the 16cm length gives you extra depth in the soil when you need it.

It’s definitely more of an investment than an impulse purchase but you can feel better knowing that Sneeboer & Zn donate money from every sale to the upkeep of the wonderful piece of English heritage that is Great Dixter.

5. Wilko

Wilko long-handled garden trowel
Dig your garden without being on your knees
  • Wood and stainless steel border trowel, £5 from Wilko – buy here

With its longer-than-usual wooden handle, this budget option from Wilko will save you having to kneel to dig holes when digging in your flowerbeds.

The stainless steel blade is rust-resistant making the trowel ideal for forgetful gardeners who tend to leave their tools out in the rain, and the wood handle is FSC-certified.

And all for a very reasonable £5 – what’s not to like?

6. PKS Bronze

PKS copper trowel
Copper is said to have beneficial properties for garden soil
  • PKS Bronze Musca copper scoop-shaped trowel, £45 from Burford Garden Co. – buy here

The growing trend for copper garden implements is largely down to the fact that they’re supposed to enrich the soil with beneficial trace elements and ward off the slugs, snails and other nasties eyeing up your allotment veggies.

The jury’s out on this, but there’s no doubt that this handsome trowel with its heart-shaped copper blade is a thing of beauty – it’s almost a shame to keep it in the shed.

Enjoyed our round-up of the best garden trowels? We’ve got loads more recommendations for your garden in Sun Selects Garden & Tools.

If you want to use your kitchen waste to make an eco-friendly compost for your garden, check out our feature on the best compost bins.

Or you’re looking for outdoor furniture to help you make the most of the warmer weather, take a look at our round-up of the best sun loungers.


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