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Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Official Hoe Portrait - Stirrup Hoe

Every hoe has to have an official portrait and this is it for the new stirrup hoe, purchased earlier this spring. What do you think? I thought the blue of the Blue Dogbane (Amsonia tabernaemontana) would complement the lovely blue of the hoe itself which is why I chose this spot and this time to take the picture.

This is a fine hoe and quickly becoming one of my favorites. I've used it several times in the raised bed vegetable garden beds to clear out weeds and find it is easy to use, light enough that you don't feel like you are dragging a club through the ground, but substantial enough to whack off those weeds!

I've also added this portrait to the whole hoe collection post.

I'm always available to give advice on hoes, which ones to use for which occasions, which hoes to avoid, where to buy a good hoe, just ask! The only thing I don't know about hoes is how to stop acquiring them!

Does anyone else have more than one hoe? Is anyone gardening without a hoe?


Yolanda Elizabet said...

I'm gardening without a real hoe. I have a half hoe, half a 3 pronged fork sort of thingy, which I seldom use.

You know before I met you and your impressive collection, I never thought about hoes at all. Not even about a scuffle hoe (schoffel) and they are Dutch. How very remiss of me. :-)

El said...

Hey Carol! That's not the kind of stirrup hoe I was thinking of: the one I have is hinged (at the point of the angle) so it helps with the back-and-forth motion. I am glad you like this one, but if you don't, look up "oscillating stirrup hoe" to see what I mean; your collection could always grow by one... (And I have only two hoes, the one I just mentioned and a traditional one.)

Kathy said...

I really don't use a hoe. I've always thought of them as useful for a vegetable garden where you grow plants in rows. I don't grow my flowers in rows, I'm always trying to distinguish between self-sown flowers and weed seedlings, and am often battling well-established weeds that need to be pulled out by the roots. I am getting quite a collection of garden forks. Maybe I should post that sometime . . .

Kylee said...

I don't use a hoe, either. I use my garden fork and my three-pronged cultivator all the time, though! I suppose it's like someone who uses a long-handled mop and someone who gets down on their hands and knees with a rag to mop the floor!

My husband, however, does use just a regular garden hoe for in between the rows of vegetables. I let him take care of those. :-)

Jalos said...

First of all, I wunder what you meant in your writing about the hoe, even the picture of it didn't ring a bell.
But when I saw your link of the hoe collection...yes, now I know what you are talking about!
I don't use a hoe anymore, I use a 3 pronged fork like Yolanda Elizabet does.
But I do have one in the shed. ( wich I use before i had the forkything )
Maybe my english isn't all that, but I'm dutch, so forgive me. ;-)

Susan said...

I am also hoe-less. Just this spring I finally got a garden fork (3-pronged) and I don't know how I did without that all these years so maybe if I got a hoe I'd feel the same about it. What would you recommend for a starter hoe?

— Susan from South of the River

Colleen said...

I have two hoes: a scuffle hoe and a traditional hoe. I bought the traditional style hoe when I bought my house, you know, thinking no garden is complete without a hoe and all, and I never used it. Then, I bought a scuffle hoe and I use it all the time. It's great for clearing weeds out of my perennial beds (I still have lots of space between they grow in more, I may have a problem.) and in between the rows in my veggie garden.

Pam/Digging said...

I don't think I've ever used a hoe in my life, aside from spreading some pea gravel with one once. I enjoy your hoe obsession, however, not to mention your hoe "portraits." What fun!

Anonymous said...

well I have 4 hoes. I have a standard like the first one pictured in your collection and a grub hoe and a forked one similar to the middle one in your picture titled "three old hoes." Actually I would probably not have considered that last one to be a hoe.

The fourth hoe I have is similar to the first one but the blade is long and very narrow. all of them are pretty old with wooden handles.

However I don't really use any of them except the grub hoe. I don't have any row crops. We grow our veggies in a narrow raised bed and it is easier to use short hand tools or just pull the weeds.

prairie point

Kate said...

I'm not a hoe user either, probably because I don't own one. It has never occurred to me to buy one ... the only real garden tool I use is my spade and hand shovel. But then, I don't have acres of garden either.

Your hoe collection is impressive, Carol!

sister with the homestead said...

OK Carol, sometime I need a demonstration of how to properly use a hoe. Right now I find it is just easier to get down there in the dirt with my hands and pull the weeds. What is your absolute favorite hoe for weeding - what do you recommend (you know my weed situation).

eleanor said...

Ho Ho Ho! Do you have any rejects or do you use them all.

Layanee said...

Carol: You are queen of the hoes! lol! I do love a good hoe and have several. I have that stirrup hoe which I didn't see in your collection so it is not yet complete. It is a square ring and it works both by pushing and pulling but watch out as sometimes you hoe out the good things.

Curtis said...

You can never have enought tools. I only have one hoe. A bigger stirup hoe and a garden weasel I think.

It looks like a small tiller, It's not really my weeder, what I use it for is to loosen up the top of the soil in order to plant seeds.

It's also good for leveling soil in preparing a bed to plant.

Carol said...

Yolanda Elizabet... and before I found your blog, I never thought about getting pink or flowered clogs! :-)

El... When I got this one, I knew it wasn't exactly the one you described, but I wanted to try it anyway. But someday, I'm sure I'll get an oscillating scuffle hoe. Maybe I'll treat myself at the end of May!

Kathy... It is true that hoes are very useful in vegetable gardens with rows, but most of my vegetable gardens are raised beds. I still use a hoe to work them over in the spring and then through the season. But just as often I am on my knees pulling weeds by hand or with hand tools!

Kylee... I also use the hand tools, but you are missing out on the hoeing by letting your husband do it all. You should give it a try.

Jalos... Your English is just fine. I also have a three pronged fork, both a hand tool and a long handled one. Both come in handy.

Susan... A starter hoe? I guess it depends on what you plan to hoe. For a good basic starter, I'd get a basic garden hoe from Rogue Hoe. They are very sharp, so you have to be careful, very careful.

Colleen... Okay, between your comment and El's, I think I need to get a scuffle hoe which I think is the same as the oscillating stirrup hoe she described.

Pam/Digging... Hoes can be fun... I'll just leave it at that.

Bill.. Truth be told, I don't use some of the hoes much at all. I, too, find hand tools more useful at times.

Kate... I don't have an acre, either. If you decide to get yourself a hoe, let me know and I can help you find one!

Sister with the Homestead... Most of your weeds are best pulled by hand, the old fashioned way. Then you can use a basic hoe in your garden and between the raised beds. Hoes are best used where you have some space that just needs to be cleared of all weeds, though there are hoes with smaller heads designed to be used in tight areas.

Eleanor... let's just say I have some that I don't use very often and leave it at that.

Layanee... Since you are the 3rd person to tell me I don't have the oscillating stirrup hoe, I'm just going to have to get one. I want to have a COMPLETE hoe collection.

Curtis... I obviously agree you can't have enough gardening tools.

Thanks all for the comments and support of my gardening hoe obsession. I hereby declare you are enablers, encouraging me like this!

Gotta Garden said...

I have one, no two hoes. The old fashioned one that I don't even really know how to use. And, one called a circle hoe that I bought last summer. I think I need hoe lessons...because I surely have the weeds that need hoeing! The circle one comes in a hand-held version, but I chose the recommended longer one that you can stand and use (easier on the back, I was told). I am inspired and as soon as the rainy weather passes (not serious rain, but just enough to keep me from doing things...but not enough, at least yet, to really wet things), I should get out and give it a try!

Robert said...

I have searched everywhere on the web, but I cannot find a place to buy the Dewit Stirrup hoe. I tried your link to where you purchased it but to no avail. It's exactly what I want. Can you let me know how I can get one?

Carol said...

Robert, Yes, the place I purchased this from seems to no longer be in business, which is too bad. You might try to call EarthTools: They didn't show one on the web, but did have other DeWit hoes.

Another option, when I visited Natural Gardener in Austin, Texas, they had some for sale. You might call them and see if they would sell you one and ship it to you.

Good luck!