Saturday 21 October 2017

Tools You Can't Do Without

A Facebook page I follow posts a weekly question for it's members to answer.  The page is called celebrating smallholdings uk if you search for it.

This weeks question was what equipment, tools or machinery can you not do without? What are your must haves to run a smallholding?

Tough question to answer I feel - depends on what you do and how you do it and even the time of year! 

Here on my smallholding there are many things that are essential to me to keep things running smoothly so I thought I'd list five things that I think are pretty important to me. I'll leave hand tools off this as otherwise we'd be here all day! 

The wheelbarrow is pretty essential to me. I've got three kicking around here. I think all except one have had their tyres replaced with solid rubber ones.

I use them in the garden to move muck and compost onto the beds and weeds back to the compost pile. Every building project has used them in some way, fire wood gets moved by them and children get a ride if they're lucky.  

Now where would I be without one of these? I can go for months without touching it but when I need it the machine saves me hours of back breaking work. 
It can be used for rough construction and fencing work, firewood and tree maintenance, as well as clearing any trees or branches that fall after a storm. 

Couldn't round up the sheep without the "bike". It's not because its fun or anything....

Since getting the sheep there has been a few things that have made my life easier and one of them was some good gates. Last year I brought 10 hurdles and they've made a huge difference, they lock together and make it easy to make a pen or a funnel. At lambing time they made it easier to catch and lamb ewes.
It's a purchase I haven't regretted for a second!

Weed Membrane
Not to over sell it but this has changed my life. I reuse it year on year, it cuts my weed pressure by a stupid amount and without it I wouldn't grow anywhere near the amount of veg that I do!

There are many more things I could include but what would be in your list?


  1. I'd agree with most of your suggestions Kev, particularly the wheelbarrow. I have a sharp knife/blade located in different locations: one in the barn for cutting baler twin on the hay bales; one in the feed shed to open up feed sacks; one in the greenhouse for cutting string for tying in tomato plants etc; and of course in the workshop for various activities. Strangely enough I wrote about gates on my blog last night.

  2. In my tiny garden, the most important item is my greenhouse, I grow so much and have some fun with seeds and pips.

  3. I have 7 wheelbarrows that I use around here mainly for firewood and manure. Chain saws and splitting tools. A come-a-long to move heavy things, better than a helper and a lot less noise.
    We live in an isolated area with all kinds of predators that we need a rifle for long range and a shotgun for close in.

  4. Buckets, wellingtons, four prong pike, hedge clippers, loppers, trowel, shovel and my friend: Azada hoe.

  5. YES!!! Finally someone who understand the importance of a solid wheel on a wheelbarrow! Can you please do a post on how you replaced the pneumatic wheel with a sold one please. I have one ancient wheelbarrow with a solid wheel but would like to buy a newer bigger one but they only have pneumatic tyres and I don't want pneumatic, I want a solid tyre.

  6. My antique warren hoe that came from my great uncle. It's perfect for everything.
    And holy crap, those squash. What kind are they? They're beautiful!

  7. Awesome blog, i always enjoy & read the post you are sharing!
    Thank for your very good article...!


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