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/ Source: TODAY
By Julie Pennell

Whether you’re growing pretty flowers or yummy fruits and vegetables, maintaining a bountiful garden requires some work. If you’re just getting started, you’ll want to make sure you have all the proper tools and products to make it a successful project.

TODAY Home chatted with gardening expert Kathie Rowell, blogger at Louisiana Blooms, who’s been gardening for more than 25 years to find out her recommendations. See below for some of the things every gardener should consider owning:

1. Fiskars 47-Inch Steel D-Handle Garden Fork, $36, Amazon

Garden essentials - Fiskars 47-Inch Steel D-Handle Garden Fork

“Essential for spreading mulch and mixing compost into your soil, a spading fork looks like a pitch fork with straight, thick tines,” Rowell said. “It’s also great for lifting bulbs, dividing perennials and aerating compacted soil.”

2. Wilcox 12" All-Pro Digging Trowel, $18, Amazon

Garden essentials - Wilcox 12" All-Pro Digging Trowel

“A trowel can perform a multitude of tasks including digging holes, breaking up soil, mixing fertilizer and transferring plants,” said Rowell. “Skip the cheap plastic models which will break within a few uses and take home a study version in stainless steel.”

3. Felco F-2 Classic Manual Hand Pruner, $48, Amazon

Garden essentials - Felco F-2 Classic Manual Hand Pruner

Hand pruners like this one are “great for cutting roses, shaping plants, removing dead wood,” she said. “Opt for bypass pruners, which operate like scissors and produce a clean, sharp cut, appropriate for most jobs. Anvil pruners, which feature a single blade that meets a flat surface, produce a crushing cut and are best used on dead wood.”

4. NeverKink 100’ water hose, $42, Amazon

Garden essentials - NeverKink 100' water hose

“For a water hose that lasts, invest in one not prone to kinking, cracking and splitting,” said Rowell. “That means reaching for rubber with cast brass couplings instead of vinyl with plastic couplings. Base the length you choose on the size of your yard and opt for a 5/8-inch width.”

5. Garden Products USA’s Garden Spray Watering Wand, $22, Amazon

Garden essentials - Garden Products USA's Garden Spray Watering Wand

“Great for irrigating hanging baskets as well as reaching the back of your flower bed, a long-handle nozzle delivers water where you want it without straining your muscles,” she said.

6. Espoma Plant Tone All-Natural and All-Purpose Fertilizer, $42, Amazon

Garden essentials - Espoma Plant Tone All-Natural and All-Purpose Fertilizer

“Most plants perform better with supplemental fertilization, but novice gardeners often overdo it and end up with severely damaged or dead plants,” Rowell explained. “Organic fertilizer is much less likely to burn plants or pollute groundwater.”

7. Month-by-Month Gardening series published by Cool Springs Press, Prices vary by book, Amazon

Garden essentials - Month-by-Month Gardening series published by Cool Springs Press

While not a traditional tool in the sense, Rowell said a regional gardening book like the ones in this series can be extremely helpful. “With all the gardening information available on the internet, it may seem unnecessary to invest in a gardening book, but it’s a really good idea. What, when and even where to plant are dictated to a large extent by where you live," she said. "For example, tomatoes are typically planted in March and April in the Louisiana, but May and June in Ohio. That’s why it’s essential to follow advice for your region.”