Garden Tool Awards 2011
Reading the Fat Gardener’s blog has always been its own reward, but for the hard working garden tool manufacturers of the world something more tangible is required. This year I have tested even more tools and equipment than last year and continue to be impressed with how the best manufacturers continue to strive to improve their products for UK gardeners.
• The best ‘new’ garden tool award goes to Haemmerlin for their colourful new 5000G range of wheelbarrows – available in green, lilac, yellow and pink these wheelbarrows are well-built, affordable and so bright they won’t get lost in the garden!
• The ‘value for money’ tool award is awarded to Ethel Gloves for their ‘Utility’ gloves – made with a warm, breathable knit construction, a full palm waterproof grip and 100% machine washable, all for a very reasonable £6.99 (excl. p&p).
• The pruning tool award goes (once again) to Silky Saws, this time for their Topgun 240mm Folding Saw – recommended by gardeners such as Rachael de Thame, Monty Don and me(!), this saw is very sharp, cuts very quickly and folds away neatly to be stored in a pocket.
• The best digging tool award is won for the third year in a row by British manufacturers, Bulldog Tools for their Premier Treaded Digging Spade with 32" Handle – a very durable spade equipped with treads to save your boots and a slightly longer than normal (32") handle to save your back.
• The best cultivating tool award is awarded to Bahco for their long serving and reliable edging shears – although pruning shears are not strictly for cultivating, they are essential for cultivating a beautiful lawn and I love mine!
• The best gardening power tool award goes to Bosch for the AKE30LI 36V Cordless Chainsaw – fitted with a 30cm bar it is very easy to use and does away with annoying cables and smelly petrol. The powerful 36 volt lithium-ion battery is quiet, clean and efficient.
• The best children’s garden tool award is won by Spear & Jackson for their lovely Stainless Steel Children’s Trowel and Fork Set – just as well made as the grown-up versions, but beautifully proportioned for small hands.
• The most innovative tool award is awarded to Original-LÖWE for their ‘best of both worlds’ Anvil Pruners – combining the slimness and curved blade of bypass secateurs with the easy cutting and reduced impact of anvil secateurs.
• The best garden accessory award goes to Haws for their great watering cans – made in Smethwick, England since 1866, the cans are available in a variety of traditional and not so traditional colours; every garden should have at least one.
And the two biggest awards of the year:
• Best garden tool for 2011 is awarded to Okatsune for their hedge shears which are tough, very sharp, lightweight, great for topiary work and available in two sizes; standard and long handled for a little extra reach.
• Best garden tool manufacturer for 2011 is awarded to TINA knives who, despite being in Germany offer very quick, reliable deliveries with 100% availability (yes, 100% in 2011!) and unsurpassed customer services.
I will conclude by saying that I think that this year’s award winners are the best yet and I’m really looking forward to 2012 to see what goodies I get to try out in my garden!
All the winning garden tools (plus lots more) can be purchased online at: www.qualitygardentools.com
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