Best Garden Spade: Digging Up the Top 5 Options

Best Garden Spade: Digging Up the Top 5 Options

11 min read

There was a survey conducted in 2019 about the most common hobby taken by people, and gardening ranked number one among the old age group. What's not to love about a beautiful garden around the house or being able to grow your own organic vegetables or fruits? Some people take it as a hobby, and some as a necessity.

Getting your garden or lawn to an immaculate shape requires a lot of work. However, the most important thing is the right tools. It makes an immense difference when you use the right tools, and they prevent you from splinters and blisters. Most people go to the extreme when buying the tools, which may cause a dent in your pocket and also take up a lot of space in your garage. So, always look for quality instead of quantity when gardening.

A fundamental tool used in gardening is the garden spade which makes gardening easy and breezy. It is used for digging holes for planting, edging, lifting the sod, and moving them to another place. You might just want to get the cheapest garden spade available in the market, but it either won't get the task done properly or will get rusted soon. So, look for something that will last you a lifetime.

It's very important to get a suitable garden spade according to your body's fitness and structure. In addition, moving around with a heavy tool will make gardening harder. So, invest in a spade that is easier for you to carry around and use. In this article, we will review some of the best garden spades.

How We've Made Our Selection

Our selection process involves thoroughly understanding each garden spade's company, examining product details, and analyzing customer feedback. Our editors independently choose the top options to ensure that the quality of each spade meets your needs and matches the standards of your home.

It's important to remember that what works for one consumer may not work for everyone.

Top 5 Garden Spades

What Stands Out

  • The blade is made of durable carbon steel that is powder-coated for protection against corrosion.
  • The sharpened inverted-V edge makes penetrating hard-packed soil and slaying roots easier.
  • The wide foot placement spot allows for effective penetration of the soil and prevents slipping underfoot.
  • Multi-purpose spade that can combine several functions, eliminating the need to switch tools during gardening.

What to Keep in Mind

  • It may not be the best choice for tasks that require a more traditional shovel shape, such as moving loose soil or digging shallow trenches.

Gardening can be a great way to spend time outside and create a beautiful outdoor space, but it's important to use the right tools to avoid fatigue or injuries. Luckily, the Radius Garden Root Slayer Shovel is here to help!

This transplanting spade combines multiple tools into one, so you can work efficiently without having to constantly switch between tools. Plus, the garden shovel's teeth make it even more convenient to use.

The blade of this root slayer is made of strong carbon steel that is shock, scratch, and impact-resistant, and it's powder-coated to prevent corrosion from different soil conditions. With minimal maintenance needed, you can expect long-lasting and reliable performance from this shovel. The sharpened inverted-V edge makes it easy to penetrate hard-packed soil and cut through roots that might be in the way. This unique blade shape also allows for precision digging.

The wide foot placement spot on the shovel ensures that you can effectively push the tool into the soil and prevent it from slipping under your shoe. With the Radius Garden root tool, digging is made easy and hassle-free.

What Stands Out

  • Durable.
  • Features welded 14-gauge hardened steel blade and an 18-gauge steel shaft.
  • A flat, sharpened blade makes gardening effortless.
  • Extra-large D handle allows two-handed control.
  • Lifetime warranty.

What to Keep in Mind

  • Some people reviewed that water can seep into the handlebar, and there seems to be no opening for it to drain out, which might cause some rust.
  • It might need some practice to master the use of this tool.

The best-seller garden spade in the market is the Fiskars Square Garden Spade. Fiskars is one of the leading names in the gardening industry. They have been manufacturing garden tools since 1969, giving them an edge when manufacturing the best products.

It's a versatile spade but is most suitable for strong edging, cutting a trench, slicing through thick turf, and digging. It features a welded 14-gauge hardened steel blade and an 18-gauge steel shaft. This is the definition of durability in a garden spade. The flat, sharpened blade makes gardening effortless and can easily slide into any soil, including hardened mud. It allows you to trim around the sidewalks or edge a flowerbed in a blink of an eye. The spade is said to cut a line so straight in sod that you might think that a machine was used to do it.

The extra-large D-handle looks big, but trust us when we say it comes in handy! It makes maneuvering the spade trouble-free for you, as it gives you two-handed control. It makes your grip tighter, stronger and gives you more control over the tool. The extra-large foot platform helps you put in the utmost strength possible.

What's not to love about this versatile garden spade, with the amazing features that do the job exceptionally well?

What Stands Out

  • It has a single-piece hardwood shaft which provides great durability.
  • A wooden soft grip handle, which is even weatherproofed.
  • Mirror polished blade for it to be rust resistant.
  • 10-year warranty.

What to Keep in Mind

  • The handle has been reviewed to bend if put under very strong pressure, and it can be used mainly for small-scale gardening projects.

Spear & Jackson have been manufacturing garden tools in England since 1765. They are known for using expert English craftsmanship to produce their products. People around the globe use their products.

The Spear & Jackson spade is a multicolored spade shovel featuring a stainless steel blade. It is a very traditional English-style border spade, specifically designed for basic digging and cultivation in narrow spaces, between plants, or around the border.

The wooden handle is strong, gives a soft grip, and is durable. The wooden shaft is a single piece that is then split to make the wishbone handle shape. They have managed to give it a weatherproof finish. The stainless steel blade material is mirror polished to make it rust-resistant.

It has also been called a heavy work of art, as not only does it have an appealing finish to it, but it is also heavy enough to sink deeply into soils and lift/pry up bulbs, grasses, edging, and any task you name it. It's great for dividing plants. The company provides an amazing 10-year guarantee.

What Stands Out

  • Features welded 14-gauge hardened steel blade and an 18-gauge steel shaft.
  • Teardrop-shaped shaft fits perfectly to the shape and motion of your hand.
  • An oversized foot platform lets you put pressure in the right place.
  • Powder-coated shovel to prevent rust.
  • Lifetime warranty.

What to Keep in Mind

  • Reviews have shown that the blade is a bit more rounded than it looks, so it might perform differently. It is advised to check the product in-store, if possible, before buying.

We have already mentioned that Fiskars is one of the best manufacturers of gardening tools. Another garden spade they manufacture is the Fiskars Transplanting Spade. Although it may almost sound like the first one, it features a different blade suitable for specific purposes.

The spade is specifically designed to be used for digging small deep holes, digging up bulbs, and other basic gardening tasks. It comes with the right grip for all of these tasks. It is extremely lightweight and can be used by anyone.

Just like the other Fiskars spade, it also features a welded 14-gauge steel blade and 18-gauge steel shaft, making it quite durable and strong. The teardrop-shaped shaft fits like a glove to the shape and motion of your hands. The blade is also directly welded onto the shaft, making the bending chance very low. The extra-wide foot platform makes it easy to put a lot of pressure in just the right place.

Additionally, the metal shafts and blade of the spade are powder-coated, which will prevent rust and can be easily cleaned. Various customers with different heights have used it, and they all were really happy with it, and it didn't cause any back problems, which are common if you are using the wrong tool. It comes with a lifetime warranty.

What Stands Out

  • Features welded 14-gauge hardened steel blade and an 18-gauge steel shaft.
  • Teardrop-shaped shaft fits perfectly to the shape and motion of your hand.
  • An oversized foot platform lets you put pressure in the right place.
  • Powder-coated shovel to prevent rust.
  • Cushioned grip handle with UV inhibitors.
  • Lifetime warranty.

What to Keep in Mind

  • The handle can break if you use it as a pry bar to remove large rocks and boulders.

The Spear Head Spade has a very interesting backstory. An 85-year-old with two artificial knees and two artificial hips found it exhausting to pursue his passion for gardening. He just couldn't find the right tool to use. So, he decided to make something that could be beneficial for everyone.

That's how the Spear Head Spade was manufactured.

It can be used for transplanting or for separating heavy-rooted areas. You can easily use it around trees or bushes for planting holes or even dig in hard, rocky soil.

The spade is made from reinforced fiberglass handles. It is one of the lightest and strongest spade handles available in the market. They are weatherproofed and require very low maintenance.

The spade blade material is high-carbon manganese steel which is 33% thicker and 25% harder as compared to other spades. For the spade blade to be durable and have a more enhanced finish, it has been pre-sharpened and coated with a unique epoxy powder coating which wears away on the edges first. So, the more you use it, the sharper the blade will get.

This spade features a very lightweight cushioned grip handle, which makes it effortless to use even on tough roots. It can hold out against the wet weather or the harshest outdoor weather because of UV inhibitors.

Types Of Garden Spades

Although many different types of spades are available, we will talk about the most common Garden spades: Flat border spades and Digging spades. Both get the work done perfectly; it just depends on which suits your needs better.

Digging Spade

Digging spades have rectangular blades and are wider than Standard Spades. The wider blade makes moving more soil easier and gets the task done quicker. It's suitable for the edging purpose of small trees also. What makes it different from a standard spade is it has a more curved blade.

Flat Blade Spade

The flat Border spade is lighter and smaller than the digging spade. It is easier to move around and is highly recommended for someone with a delicate physique. It is suitable mainly for digging for small plants and working on raised gardens.

What to Look for When Buying a Garden Spade

Although you might think buying a garden spade is simple, it is not. Before finalizing your purchase, we will discuss the different features you should look at.

Blade Material

We recommend you get the spade made from stainless steel, welded, or carbon steel blades. They last a lifetime and won't rust.

The stainless-steel blade or carbon steel blade can slide inside the soil without any trouble and is very easy to clean. However, these materials are heavier.

For a lightweight garden spade, look for spades made with carbon, plastic, or aluminum. Remember that they need a lot of aftercare, as they tend to corrode and rust. Unlike a stainless-steel spade, they are made from one piece, so there's no chance of it snapping. That being said, we suggest you get a rust-resistant spade.

The edge of the spade's blade is called the tip. A few features that the best garden spade should have is a serrated edge and a flat tip. It makes it easier to scoop the soil and move it. If you are looking for a garden spade for digging and cutting purposes, look for rounded or pointed blade tips.

Shaft and Handle Grip

The shaft is the long piece between the handle and the blade. It holds together both pieces and is an important aspect to look into. Most of the spade shafts are made from wood or fiberglass. The fiberglass handle/shaft is lightweight and needs no maintenance, but it's not easy to replace if it breaks. However, a wood shaft is easily available and can be replaced quickly. Some professional gardeners recommend brushing linseed oil annually on your wood shafts.

The handle holds a valuable part in choosing your garden spade. It is the part you will hold from and should be highly comfortable. An ergonomic handle is what we always look for. There are different types of handles: D-shaped Handles, T-shaped Handle, and Straight Handle.

The D grip handle is widely favored, giving good support and comfort. But, the usual size of this handle can be difficult to use for people with big/large hands. The T handle is suitable for all sizes of hands and lets you put strong force to grip the spade handle while working. The Straight handle has just a rounded end to the shaft and doesn't have any sort of attachment. Although it takes less storage space, it provides no support or grip while working and thus isn't preferred at all.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between the garden spade and the garden shovel?

A garden spade is typically used for digging, cutting through roots, and edging garden beds. A garden shovel moves dirt, mulch, or other materials from one place to another. The main difference between the two is in their shape and purpose.

What is the best spade for turning soil?

A D-handle square spade with a flat blade is the best type for turning soil. It allows for efficient cutting and digging through tough soil. Additionally, a long handle provides more leverage and makes the task easier on your back.

What is the difference between a garden spade and a border spade?

The main difference between a garden spade and a border spade is its size and purpose. A garden spade typically has a larger blade and is designed for heavy-duty digging tasks, such as turning soil or digging holes for plants or trees. On the other hand, a border spade has a smaller, narrower blade and is designed for lighter tasks, such as creating edges for garden beds or working in tight spaces. Additionally, border spades often have a shorter handle, making them easier to maneuver in small areas.

What is the best digging spade shovel?

A spade with a square or pointed head is typically the best type for digging, as it can easily cut through soil and roots.

Is carbon steel better than stainless steel blades?

Carbon steel blades are generally preferred in garden spades because they are stronger and more durable than stainless steel blades. However, carbon steel blades may rust if not properly maintained, while stainless steel blades are more resistant to corrosion.

What Option of Best Garden Spade is Best for You?

In conclusion, it's all about personal preference when it comes to finding the perfect garden spade for you.

From digging deep trenches to digging delicate holes, there is no one-size fits all solution. We suggest doing your research, researching customer reviews, and trying different types of garden spades until you find the best fit. Good gardening tools will make your life easier and help you maintain a neat, lush garden.

So our final advice is: figure out what features matter most to you, do some comparison shopping, ask for advice from experienced gardeners, and pick the one that fits your individual needs.

With a bit of effort and luck, you'll soon reap the benefits of having the perfect gardening tool in your backyard!

Items reviewed:

Best for Roots & Most Popular- Radius Garden Root Slayer

Best for Edging & Overall- Fiskars Square Garden Spade

Best for Digging- Spear & Jackson Traditional Spade

Best Transplanting Spade- Fiskars Transplanting Spade

Best Spear Head- Spear Head Spade

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