Credit: Annie Mole
Most avid gardeners know the importance of having a quality garden fork on hand to help minimize their labor time in the garden. There are many seasoned and even amatuer gardeners that rank it as their number one tool because of its ability to dig, turn, and loosen soil.
The heavy tines allow the garden fork to penetrate deep into the soil and move around obstructions such as rocks and roots. It is an excellent tool for aerating, pulling up items buried (i.e. potatoes or weed roots), and breaking up clumps of soil or other material.
Without further delay, here are our favorite garden forks after our thorough research of the market.
The 10 Best Garden Forks
1. Fiskars Ergo D-handle Steel Garden Fork
When we look to buy new garden tools, Fiskars is commonly our go-to brand due to the high quality products they manufacture. The Fiskar Ergo Garden Fork is no exception to this quality. The company offers a full lifetime warranty for this tool which speaks to its superior construction.
This 47 inch long tool features an angled D-handle that greatly assists in keeping the wrists comfortable while doing yard work. Additionally, there is ample grip on the shaft to allow the hand to be positioned where comfortable.
The head and shaft of the tool are constructed out of steel. The garden fork head is made out of welded boron steel and the shaft is manufactured out of 17-gauge steel. The steel is powder-coated to help reduce the chance of rust.
The high-strength boron steel pointed tines have no problem penetrating into most troublesome heavy soil or handling a significant workload. However, the garden fork is also effective at the less rigorous tasks such as moving material.
- Full lifetime warranty
- Welded boron steel blade
- Ergonomic design for comfort
- Angled D-handle
- Tines could be heavier
- Tine points are cited as being dull by some
- Heavy for some potential users at 4.72 pounds
2. Truper 30299 Tru Pro Spading Fork
The Truper Tru Pro is manufactured with a fiberglass handle making it extremely durable. At a weight of 3.7 pounds, most people won’t be quickly exhausted by its weight.
The 30″ handle provides ample space to comfortably loosen, lift and turn over soil. Additionally, the D-grip allows for balance and control, which is needed for many gardening related tasks.
This fork features four tines that are heavy-duty enough to use for commercial purposes such as farming or professionally landscaping. The lifetime warranty offered by Truper provides a clue to the high quality of this fork.
- Fiberglass handle for strength
- D-grip provides comfort and control
- Commercial style/heavy-duty fork
- Some buyers said that the tines were a bit weak
3. Ames 2812200 True Temper 4-Tine Forged Spading Fork
The Ames 2812200 fork features four diamond pointed steel tines. The strength of these tines makes it easy to drive the tool into compact or hard soil. We love the long tines because they allow the user to penetrate deep into most soils without a struggle. They are particularly useful for manual lawn aerating or digging deep.
- Long tines for deep soil penetration
- Four sharp diamond pointed tines
- D-handle for grip and control
- D-handle has been cited as being weak
- Durability for heavy-duty task may be an issue
4. Radius Garden 203 Pro Steel Fork
The innovative design of the Radius O-handle allows the user the ability to grab the handle with both hands using their most natural hand position. Other handle designs often limit where the hands can be placed. This can lead to discomfort, especially when involved in lengthy periods of gardening.
The O-handle shifts a lot of the stress off the hands/wrists and into the more powerful upper arm and shoulder muscles. The ergonomic design of Radius Garden 203 Fork may be useful for people who have trouble maneuvering traditional garden tools without quickly fatigue in the hands.
The tines are made from a heavy-duty stainless steel that is extremely difficult to bend. More impressive is the resin-encased carbon steel shaft that contributes greatly to the tools strength and durability.
This tool is best used for turning soil or moving material around the yard. While a bit pricey in comparison to other similar type of tools, its price is warranted given the top-notch quality of this fork.
- Ergonomic O-handle design
- Heavy-duty stainless steel tines
- Lifetime warranty
- Company customer service cited by buyers as lacking when contacted with issues
- Tines could be stronger for heavy-duty use
5. Hoss Tools Garden Digging Fork
The company that makes this garden fork, Hoss Tools, claims this is the best garden fork on the market. Looking at the previous garden forks, they have some tough competition. However, their claim is not ridiculous by any means.
The Hoss Tools Garden Fork features 11 inch tines that are heat treated and built to withstand tough daily wear and tear. The tool is 42 inches in total length offering an ideal size for most users.
This garden fork is excellent for digging up potatoes, cultivating the soil, or moving around compost.
One feature we really appreciate about this tool is the dedicated foot pad. The pad is able to switch from the left or right side of the fork. This allows the user to use their most dominate foot to drive the fork into the ground. The pad is bolted in so it will not move once tightened down.
- Heat-treated steel construction
- High-quality (aircraft-quality) D-handle
- Long tines to penetrate deep into the soil
- Interchangeable right or left foot pad
- Only a 5 year warranty on handle
- 5.5 pounds overall weight may be heavy for some
6. Flexrake CLA324 Classic Hand Fork
In certain circumstance, the larger garden forks, such as the ones featured above, are overkill. It is often wise to also have a hand garden fork like this Flexrake for those smaller garden tasks.
The Flexrake is modeled after the craftsmanship of traditional garden tools that have stood the test of time. It is made after tools that have been passed down from generation to generation because of their superior construction.
This hand rake features three durable carbon steel blades. The manufacturer claims that the tool will not bend. However, there are some reviews on Amazon that state the contrary. You should anticipate on using this for only light to potentially medium-duty tasks.
The oak handle not only provides character but also is comfortable in the hand. While not pictured above, the handle also contains leather loop on the handle for hanging purposes.
- Affordable and versatile hand tool
- Carbon steel blades
- Lightweight at 1.1 lbs.
- May bend with heavy-duty tasks
- Only 5 year warranty
7. Spear & Jackson 4552BF Traditional Stainless Steel Border Fork
This Spear & Jackson fork is manufactured with a small head. This makes it ideal for reaching into tight places such as between shrubs or close to a fence.
The head/tines are mirror polished stainless steel. This makes it rust resistant and allows it to hold up over time. The polish steel also adds an element of beauty to this tool and makes it easy to clean.
One unique feature we absolutely love about this fork is its wood handle. The shaft leading up to the end of the handle is all crafted out of one piece of extremely durable hardwood. The wood is weatherproofed and will not flex. If you forget to bring it inside before a storm , all is not lost.
- Durable stainless steel head
- Weatherproofed shaft
- 10 year guarantee
- Tines core could be more robust to prevent potential bends
8. Spear & Jackson Traditional Digging Fork 4550DF
The Spear & Jackson 4550DF is a high-grade digging fork. It has been customized to meet the standards of traditional English forks which are known for their digging efficiency.
This tool is equipped with a stainless steel head. The steel is mirror polished given it a unique, high-end look for a garden tool.
It is best used for digging up things such as roots, weeds, potatoes, and plants. It is also highly effective at turning soil and breaking up clumps.
This fork has four long tines that are rust-resistant. The mirror polished steel helps prevent dirt or other debris from sticking to the tines. This helps minimize the amount of cleanup.
The Spear & Jackson 4550DF features a similar weatherproofed shaft as the border fork above. The shaft leading up to the wishbone handle are all made from one piece of hardwood. This tool is comfortable to handle for everyday use.
- Durable stainless steel head
- Weatherproofed shaft
- 10 year guarantee
- Noted breakage at the handle and metal point (see reviews)
9. Ames True Temper Spading Fork 165117600
The Ames True Temper is an affordable but durable option for a garden fork. It features diamond back tines and a heat treated forged steel head. The D-handle helps control the tool and is useful for driving the tool into the ground.
The steel and wood handle measures 28 inches with overall dimensions of 2.5 x 6.6 x 45.5 inches. At 3.9 pounds, it is easy to mauvering for tasks such as digging, turning tough soil, and aerating.
- High-quality, yet affordable
- Diamond back tines with steel head
- Minimal long-term data on durability available
10. DeWit Forged Hand Fork
The DeWit hand fork is one of the best garden forks for working in small areas. The manufacturer designed this tool with comfort in mind by carefully selecting the dimensions. The fork is excellent for breaking up soil or aerating tough soil.
The tines are made out of a strong tempered Swedish boron steel that is hand-forged. This type of steel makes it difficult to dull the pointed tines. You can return to this tool time after time knowing that its performance will not suffer. The manufacturer is so confident in the durability of this tool that they guarantee it for a lifetime. It is an excellent tool to upgrade or add to your existing hand tool collection.
The beautiful ash handle is designed to fit comfortably in the hand to allow for extended usage. The manufacturer states that the handle has an elasticity to it. This means that it can bend without breaking which is a nice feature if your tools are occasionally treated rough.
Note: If you are looking for hand tools, you may also be interested in our article on the best pruning shears.
- Durable Swedish boron steel
- Lifetime guarantee
- Lightweight (8 ounces), practical design
- Professional grade tool
- One buyer noted a bend after use on the steel neck
Best Garden Fork Brands
Fiskars has been around since 1649. The company is named after the Finnish village where it started as an ironworks. We can safely say that they have learned a thing or two about making tools over three centuries of being in business. During the 19th century, the company focused on manufacturing a wide range of products including cutlery and steam engines. However, likely their most famous product, scissors, were first invented. Fiskars scissors with the classic orange handles would soon be considered the best available in the market. In 2007, the company acquired two businesses that helped place them in forefront of the garden tool market.
Truper was founded in 1961 where the company first specialized in making sledge hammers, pickaxes, vises, and more. Today, this Mexican company is family-owned and focuses on making high quality products at the reasonable price for consumers. They are the world’s largest hardware exporters with products sold in over 40 countries.
Ames dates to the Revolutionary War era where Captain John Ames started producing the first American shovels. The company’s shovels have helped build America’s history by being used for railroads, Civil War, the Oregon Trail, Statue of Liberty, and many other pivotal projects. Today they manufacture a large catalog of landscaping and gardening tools in additional to top-notch shovels.
Radius Garden is known for their ergonomic tools, so it is no surprise that the first products were formed with the users’ well-being in mind. They design high-quality garden tools with a primary focus on comfort and minimizing hand/wrist stress.
Flexrake has been family owned and operated since 1945. The founder, George Brock, invented the first lawn rake with curved tines, a light weight, and the ability for the tines to reach beneath the lawn surface to collect embedded debris. While Flexrake still is a top brand for rakes, they also manufacture a variety of lawn, garden, and dog cleanup tools.
Hoss Tools is a Georgia company that was formed in 2009. The founders realized that the market lacked quality gardening tools. They responded by manufacturing superior tools that were affordable to customers. Today, they continue the tradition of producing high-quality and affordable products that are built to last.
Spear & Jackson
Spear & Jackson has been in business since 1760 selling hand, garden, landscaping and other tools. The company is based in Sheffield, UK which is known for its history of steel production. It has been in this city since its formation. Products are currently exported to 120 countries around the world.
Dewit is based out of Holland and was founded in 1898. All of their tool are hand-crafted and made with steel heads that are machine-washed. The tools are then coated with a water-base and baked to create a protective layer during transportation. The craftsmanship of these tools is first-rate and the quality is superior to the majority of tools available for purchase.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Is a garden fork different from a pitchfork?
- Yes. A pitch fork generally has a longer handle and lighter tines. It is used for pitching material such as hay, straw, or mulch into a wheelbarrow or other location. A garden fork has heavier tines and is overall more compact than a pitchfork. The heavy tines make it easy to drive the tool into the soil for turning, digging, and aerating.
- What are the different types of forks?
- Digging (spading), border, potato, compost, trench, and pitch are the common forks. Check out this article via Wonkee Donkee Tools that provides a solid overview of the application and features of each type of fork.