The following are the tools and gear I use to take care of my half acre yard. These are all items I own and recommend based on their performance and cost. Most can be found at your local Home Depot, Lowes, Ace Hardware, Tractor Supply or online at Amazon.
For lawn mowers, I recommend getting a self-propelled or walk behind mower. After looking at the top models I picked the Honda based on personal experience with the brand.
I own a slightly different model, which isn’t available any longer, the HRR2168VKA, for over 5 years now. It is still running great after all this time and the next mower I buy will be a Honda as well.
Weedeater / Edger
Although this model doesn’t have the best feedback, I have loved using mine. The 40V models aren’t that expensive (check price on Amazon).
I have been using the same battery for over 5 years. Prior to getting this, I had a 2 cycle gas powered trimmer. This is much easier, just plug in the battery and go. The swivel head allows you to switch from trimmer to edger easily. It is much lighter than a gas powered trimmer so it’s easy on the arms.
Update April 2020: Grass season has started and I have pulled the Ryobi out to clean up along the fencelines and walkways, but the battery does not stay charged long enough to clear the whole yard. Also, it seems to be cutting out when the battery is half charged (There is a push meter on the back of the battery). If I can get away with just a replacement battery, I will go that route. If I have to get a new weedeter, my recommendation here may change. But I still love this one even if the battery only lasts 5-6 years.
The only cons I have about this are the string needs to be pulled manually. I did have to replace the end cap after it wore down but it was only a few bucks.
Even if you don’t get this model, I would highly recommend getting a battery-powered unit that has a swivel head for edging.
I wrote a review about the top 5 under $500 tool chests a few months ago. In it, I selected a 3-drawer Craftsman tool box (Amazon link). I use the same one at home. I also have the Craftsman 4 drawer rolling cabinet underneath. I would have included it in the review but it would have pushed the total price over the $500 cutoff by a little.
A sturdy tool chest is something that is going to be with you for life so don’t skimp on it. I’ve had mine for close to 20 years and it’s still in perfect shape.
I have 6 of these plastic shelves from Home Depot in my garage. Metal shelving is more useful with adjustable shelf height, but the price of these plastic shelves is why they are recommended.
I have the 6’Hx3’Wx2’D versions shown here. Only $50.
I’ve had this leaf blower for around 5 or 6 years. Previously, I used a gas powered version but the engine would not start reliably. Electric for everything except the lawn mower is working great for me. Less hassle keeping up with multiple engines.
It is a corded electric leaf blower manufactured by Toro (check price on amazon). I have been thinking about getting a battery-powered model that would work with the existing 40V battery on my Ryobi trimmer. But at such a low price point and the fact that it still works like a champ, I haven’t seen a need to replace it.
This is one item I rarely use. It is a Ryobi telescoping cordless pole saw (check price on amazon).
It mainly comes out once per year when I need to trim up the Crape Myrtle branches that are overhanging my roof. I like the Ryobi brand and stayed with it, even though it has a different battery than my trimmer.
No complaints about it, although I haven’t really put it to serious work as I don’t use it very often.
Composting Bins and Tumblers
After trying a few different composting methods over the years, I have settled on the Jora 270 tumbler (Amazon link). It has two separate containers which allow you to keep adding fresh materials while the original batch composts. I wrote up a little article about it here.
Wheelbarrows / Carts
Four wheels really are better than one. You can load more and have an easier time moving things around with a cart than a wheelbarrow. I won’t lie, this Gorilla Carts 1500lb capacity dump cart (check price on amazon) is a little pricey but it is well worth the money. I used one to haul a dump truck load of pea gravel to a new fire pit area and I didn’t spill one pebble. Not sure I could say the same with a wheelbarrow.
It’s easier on the muscles to pull a cart than balance a wheelbarrow so if you are older – or younger – this cart can help you move trash, leaves, compost, rocks, whatever where you need it.
It is claimed it will hold 1500lbs but I don’t think you would be able to pull it. Gorilla Carts makes smaller versions for hauling 600 and 1200lb loads in case you have a smaller yard. The only negative I have is it takes more precious garage space than a tilted-on-its-side wheelbarrow.
With the distance our Jasmine vines are from the nearest electrical outlet, we had to go with a battery-powered hedge trimmer. It is a Greenworks model and while it does work ok, the battery does not last long enough to cut the full length of our vines and bushes.
That’s why (if your bushes are close to an electrical outlet) I recommend purchasing the Greenworks 22 inch Corded Hedge Trimmer (Amazon link). My review of the top models is here.
It has the right power, weight and blade size to do most any clipping job a homeowner could throw at it. If my cordless model craps out I will be purchasing this one.
Other Useful Gear
These are more items that are used all the time while taking care of my yard.
I try to compost all of my clippings, but after a good rain there are too many to put in my bin. I have to bag them up and set the by the curb. This handy little collapsible bin from Ryobi (Amazon link) has proven very helpful. It is large enough to hold a whole hopper full of clippings at a time.
When its not in use, I set it by my wife’s car so she can have a trash can out in the garage. It is useful to also have a large bagged can when we want to throw away something bulky. I buy 50-gallon bags from Amazon to use with it.
Lawn and Garden Gift Guides
Looking for the perfect gift for your yardwork loving family member? Check out these gift guides that feature many unique and cool outdoor gifts. Prices range from $20 to $200 so you can find something for any budget.