You are not that young guy who used to never run out of energy any more. But your garden does not care about that and is still there requiring some solicitude. Turning the soil over would be one. It helps mixing the soil nutrients, loosens it and provides the so needed aeration. Important stuff. Here are some tools to ease this task and therefore your life!
1. Broad fork
That’s basically your own personal gigantic soil turning fork. It is sometimes referred to as U-tool. With its mighty tines you stab the ungrateful mother earth and pull out backwards in order to loosen the dense soil. This provides the aeration, giving your soil the drainage a healthy lawn should have and, of course, the water will go where it’s supposed to(no puddles). Easy peasy.
Real men use hoes. If you’re a woman just skip this paragraph. Hoes vary so there are plenty of choices here. Purposes of the use also vary and include weed control which comes from tousling the soil surrounding your plants, making nice round seed planting trenches, hilling, slashing unwanted enemy plants and whatnot. No matter which one you choose, make sure it suits you and your hands well, because it can give you awful whelks! I’d recommend using gloves but you wouldn’t be a real man then, would you?
This might sound Viking old school but there are reasons people use these. Rocky soils are one. If that’s your case, prepare yourself! Using its pointy end will help a lot with removing tree roots as well.
Rakes can do a bunch of stuff. They are the manual version of the harrow. Perfect for levelling out soil, removing grass, slight loosening of the ground. There are also leaf rakes, designed especially to help you with leaf cleaning, which are worship worthy if you have plenty of trees in or around your garden.
Finally here it is. Behind every successful garden there is a shovel. Scooping soil has never felt as masculine. Shovels also have different types. Straight shovels are for denser soils and require a well-developed technique in order not to break your fragile waist while in the middle of turning the ground over. There are slightly bent ones that provide the opportunity of digging. Great for planting holes and some funeral related acts.
A cousin of the shovel, this guy will give you the best compost turn experience ever, as far as that is possible. You will dig beds with ease and you can even use this magnificent tool for edging! Oh my!
7. Rotary tiller
Now we’re talking! This baby will do it almost by itself. Great for everything aforementioned basically. It’s rather easy and you will get quality results. I said rather because if it’s a larger tiller, a degree of upper-body strength would be needed. You can also spread some manure over the top before tilling and thereby, fertilize the soil at the same time. When using this godly device, just be careful not to destroy the soil surface by doing too much till(because with a beast like this it could actually happen).
8. Spading fork
Very good for mixing compost, loosening ground and turning soil over. I mean, if the Devil uses it for his hell gardens(I’m assuming), then it must be quality stuff. It is similar in use to the spade, but practice shows you would prefer the fork in most of the cases, because its tines make piercing the ground easier(more area pressure, yey physics). It also spares your weed root, and stones are not such an obstacle as they are for the spade. If the tines are wider and flatter the fork would be great for harvesting potato root crops and others from the like.
That’s the hand size version of the spade. Use it for weeding, digging, breaking up earth and planting in small areas.