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Garden Rake Types
You need only two kinds of garden rakes to care for your lawn and garden. A lightweight lawn rake that removes clippings and debris, and a flathead garden rake that lets you cultivate, break up dirt clods and evenly space seeds for planting. Other handy garden tools include a hand cultivator, a mechanical cultivator and a shrub rake. These are the tools you’ll use most to get started on your garden.
Garden rake types
A spring brace rake like this Midwest Rake is easy to care for and inexpensive. You can use it to pull debris out of your garden, and it makes quick work of leaves and clippings. The lightweight design means you can work longer without getting tired, but the tough steel construction gives you durability that bamboo or plastic rakes can’t match.
A steel garden rake like this flathead road rake is excellent for preparing the soil for planting. Once the soil is dry enough to work, rake to break up clods and pulverize the soil. Then turn over the rake to smooth and level the planting bed.
When planting, some gardeners press the rake handle lightly into the prepared soil to make a row for planting seeds. That makes it easier to tell vegetables from weeds when the first sprouts appear. It’s also possible to poke the points of the rake into the soil along the line you have made and use the tiny holes this makes to space seeds precisely.
Rinse off your metal rakes thoroughly with a hose after use, especially if they are muddy. Hang them up in the garage or a shed, and they are likely to last a lifetime.
A shrub rake is nice to have as well, and this one is sturdy and well made. The eight-inch width fits in among closely set plantings, and the half-inch resin tines grab debris without injuring plants. The long handle lets you work in comfort, because you don’t have to bend over as you clean up your beds.
Hand cultivators like this Craftsman ergonomic hand gardening cultivator let you remove small weeds before they crowd your plants, while working close to delicate seedlings. Cultivators come in short- and long-handled varieties, but the short-handled variety might be best for getting up close and personal with invasive weeds.
A rugged mechanical cultivator like this Easy Step roto-cultivator lets you deep-cultivate a bed, doing many of the jobs a steel rake does. In fact, many gardeners find it works faster and more efficiently than any rake. It works for removing small weeds around plantings, too, if you handle it carefully.