From mowers to scarifiers and even brooms, there are uses for many different types of tools when it comes to lawn care. I’ve tested a lot of them too.
If you want a nice looking lawn, I’d recommend investing in some high quality lawn care tools. Remember though, it doesn’t have to cost the earth and it really depends on the size of your lawn as to which tools are best for you.
So, I’ve put together this list and it’s sectioned depending on the size of lawns. Simply go straight to the section that matches your coverage area.
Firstly, an intro to a brand new invention – The Spike Mat
While I haven’t yet tried the (patent pending) Spike Mat myself, it’s an invention that I believe shouldn’t go unnoticed. The tool claims to be a step up from the spike shoes as being easier to use and quicker to achieve the desired results when aerating your lawn.
The size of the Spike Mat means you can get around a small to medium sized lawn pretty quickly.
You never know, it could take the market by storm very soon. Keep an eye out on their website to find out more about when it launches.
Tools for lawn size up to 50m2
30cm lawn mower with rear roller
For smaller lawns, you can use a smaller lawn mower and a 30cm one should do you just fine. I usually recommend getting a mower with a rear roller. The biggest benefit of a rear roller being that it will create stripes for you every time you mow.
Push cylinder mower
If you’re keeping your grass very low and mowing frequently, then it’s worth investing in a cylinder mower. What’s best is that for a small lawn, you don’t even need an electrical one – a push mower will do just fine. Cylinder mowers are much less harsh on the grass blade and make a much cleaner cut when compared to a rotary mower.
Long handled shears
Use long handled shears for keeping your edges nice and neat. You could invest in an electrical trimmer if you want (as explained below) but for a small lawn, simply doing it manually with some long handled shears will suffice.
Hand held jug style spreader
There are loooaaads of spreaders on the market. So, for a small lawn, I’d recommend simply using a hand held jug caster spreader. They’re relatively cheap to buy and can help with getting an even spread for many different size granules
Lawn rake tools come in different shapes and sizes. The 3 main ones being:
- Leaf Rake
- Soil Rake
- Lawn Rake
The lawn rake, usually steel, is good for doing a light scarification but I’ll be honest, I rarely use the ‘lawn rake’ on mine – irnonic heh?
The leaf rake is usualIy plastic and has much smaller gaps between the tines. I use my leaf rake every year because leaves fall on the grass for the whole of November – so it’s a god send when I don’t want to get the leaf blower out.
I also occasionally use the soil rake because it’s solid tines are great for getting thatch out. So, if you have a small area that needs scarifying, then a solid soil rake will do just the job.
Another option to choose instead of a rake is to buy an electric scarifier. They are worth the money because you’ll use it every year but probably not necessary if you only have 30m2 of grass.
Hollow Tine Aerator Tool
When it comes to aeration, you’re in luck if you only have a small amount of ground to cover. Why? Because it can be very time consuming to do a large area.
Pitchfork (or other aeration tools)
There are plenty of tool options when it comes to aeration. A pitch fork is a great choice because the chances are you’ll have one already. Other tools include – aeration sandles or even a rolling grass spiker.
While none of the above are as good as a hollow tine for improving drainage, they will still give the soil a way better chance of letting water and air get down to the root bed of the soil.
Lawn Care Tools for lawn size 50m2 to 100m2
Hand held broadcast spreader
If the area to cover is between 50 and 100m2, then you probably don’t need to go to a wheeled spreader. Even though it would be a perfectly reasonable decision.
Luckily, there’s a nice in between, known as a hand held broadcast spreader. You can pick these up for between £15 and £30.
Be careful here though. When applying grass seed, you’ll want to make sure you get down low while using this product. That’s because grass seed is light and can be blow into unwanted places. You don’t want your seed to end up in the flower beds because it will eventually grow and start to make them look a bit messy.
Small Drop Spreader
If you have a bigger budget or your area is closer to 100m2, then it may be worth investing in a drop spreader. You’ll definitely make use of it if you’re doing say 80m2 because it holds a lot more product than a hand held broadcast spreader. Grass seed will take up a lot of space in the spreader for very little weight, so you won’t need to do as many trips to the bag with one of these.
You definitely need one of these if you want to keep your lawn looking healthy. Thatch builds up over the year and it needs pulling out if the air and water are going to make it down to the soil for the fresh grass to benefit. So, the best way of doing that is with an electric scarifier. They’re quick, effective and really easy to use. They can also be picked up for as little as £60 (as of writing this – inflation and all that)
Wooden Stiff Bristled Broom
Yep, you read that right – you might want to invest in a good stiff bristled broom – that’s if you don’t have one already. They’re cheap, easy to store and do wonders for the look of your lawn
Why do you need a broom for lawn care?
Mainly because it’s the easiest way of getting snow off.
But there’s another reason to.
Basically, once I’ve done my maintenance tasks, whether it’s in Spring, Autumn or even Winter, I’ll go over it with the broom to finalise my stripes. Don’t get me wrong, it may not be the easiest to get them straight until after a bit of practice but it’s a good little trick to getting the photo finish you might be after.
If you’re not bothered about stripes then it doesn’t really matter but if you’re gonna post it on Facebook, or you like to admire the finishing look, then it’s worth the extra 5 minutes of time to do it.
Lawn Care tools for 100m2 and over
If you have a slightly larger lawn, then you’ll definitely want to invest in tools that make your life easier. Starting with a slightly wider lawn mower and maybe even hiring an aerator once every few years.
Note though, just because the tools mentioned above aren’t suggested here, doesn’t mean you don’t need them. For example, I would still suggest purchasing a manual hollow tine aerator so you can improve the drainage in specific areas that might need it. You’ll also need an electric scarifier.
40cm Rotary Lawn Mower + Leaf Mulcher
At this point in time, I’d recommend buying a battery powered electric mower. Some people say they are a life-changer because you don’t need to worry about mowing over the wire.
Anyhow, if you have over 100m2 to cut, then it’s worth looking for a wider mower because it means you’ll be required to do fewer ups and downs.
The other benefit of a rotary mower, is that many of them can be transformed into a leaf mulcher, which is perfect if you have large trees that shed their leaves throughout the whole of the Autumn. And even better if those trees have big leaves which can’t be used as mulch in the flower beds until they’ve been broken up.
Large Wheeled Broadcast spreader
A large wheeled broadcast spreader will hold much more lawn feed and grass seed than your standard size. Normally only really needed for lawn s over 200m2 but will still offer some benefit to lawns between 100 and 200 m2.
Hire an Automatic hollow core aerator
Automatic hollow tine aerators cost thousands of pounds so one of these is probably not worth it to the average homeowner – even those with large lawns. So, if you really want to do it properly then your best option might be to hire one from the hire shop as it will only cost about £100-£200.
It may even be worth asking a gardener to do this as a one off task – as they are the only people who would really invest in an automatic hollow tine when it comes to doing domestic lawns.
Remember though, you don’t need to do a full automatic hollow tine aeration like this every year and you can probably get away with not doing on at all but I do this with my lawn around every 3 years.
Finally, a note about costs
If you’re just starting out, I don’t want this list of tools to put you off or make you worry that your lawn care programme is going to cost you a bomb. You don’t need to get everything at once and if you can borrow off a nearby friend then that’s also a good option to get you started.
On the other hand, I always recommend using the tools in your shed to begin with or buying the cheapest options. Then, see if you carry it on and if you do invest a bit more.