Top 7 Best Shovel For Gardeners – Buying Guide

The best shovel will help you do your gardening work fast and efficiently, especially in challenging terrain. You can use it for digging, transferring, transplanting, or lots of other purposes.

We have compiled a list of great garden shovels for your consideration, along with a buying guide regarding shovel types and some key elements to choosing a suitable product.

Rhino USA Survival Shovel w/Pick - Heavy Duty Carbon Steel...
10,897 Reviews
Rhino USA Survival Shovel w/Pick - Heavy Duty Carbon Steel...
  • AMERICAN OWNED, FAMILY OPERATED - Join the Rhino Family &...
  • ULTIMATE MULTITOOL - Fire Starter, Whistle, Bottle Opener,...
  • COMPACT & PORTABLE - Full 31" Long Extended with Adjustable...

We consider the Rhino USA Survival Shovel best overall for its compact, ergonomic design, foldable mechanism, and enhanced versatility. We like how nice it feels on our hands.

Thanks to its foldable design, it can easily fit any ARB tire deflator, making it a great second onboard shovel. And as it comes with a lifetime warranty, you can receive the manufacturer’s support, even after years of use.

Top 7 Shovels For Gardener Reviews

Rhino USA Survival Shovel – Best Overall

Rhino USA Survival Shovel w/Pick - Heavy Duty Carbon Steel...
10,897 Reviews
Rhino USA Survival Shovel w/Pick - Heavy Duty Carbon Steel...
  • AMERICAN OWNED, FAMILY OPERATED - Join the Rhino Family &...
  • ULTIMATE MULTITOOL - Fire Starter, Whistle, Bottle Opener,...
  • COMPACT & PORTABLE - Full 31" Long Extended with Adjustable...

Our winner is the Rhino USA Shovel for its excellent performance in every aspect. When it comes to the design, the shovel is quite portable. It comes with a full 31-inch long extended handle, which is collapsible to 7 inches.

The Rhino USA shovel is an ideal option for the minimalists for its compact design. It comes with dimensions of 2.7 x 9.9 x 6.4 inches.

What we also like about this shovel is how nice it feels on our hands.

This shovel proves itself a heavy-duty garden tool, thanks to its solid-weight look.

But to your surprise, when you pick it up, the shovel is surprisingly lightweight, only 2.65 lbs. This design delivers enhanced versatility to deal with complicated situations.

Plus, the lightweight shovel is foldable and easily fits along with an ARB tire deflator, making it an excellent second onboard shovel. Its pouch is just about the similar size to the deflator’s pouch.

You can effortlessly throw in a recovery bag, and if completely extended, you can mount the shovel to a roof rack. This functionality can cut through soft surfaces.

With a lifetime warranty, the shovel is a good investment for gardeners. We prize a score of 10/10 for this shovel.

What We Like

  • Portable and compact design for minimalists
  • Lightweight for comfortable grip
  • Enhanced versatility for handling complex situations
  • Easy to bring
  • Lifetime warranty

What Can Be Improved?

  • None

ZUZUAN Garden Tool Set – Best For Ergonomic Design

ZUZUAN Garden Tool Set, 3 Pack Aluminum Heavy Duty Gardening...
3,237 Reviews
ZUZUAN Garden Tool Set, 3 Pack Aluminum Heavy Duty Gardening...
  • 🌷Garden Tool Sets🌷 Including hand trowel, transplant...
  • 🌷Ergonomically Design🌷 Handle is made of high quality...
  • 🌷Hand Trowel🌷 Large head displaces more soil to speed...

The runner-up, Zuzuan Garden set, includes transplant trowel, conventional trowel, and cultivator hand rake. It is the best set for its outstanding ergonomic design.

Accordingly, the shoves’ handles come with high-quality TPR rubber. This handle is non-slip and comfortable with palm rest and contoured finger grip, significantly reducing wrist and hand fatigue when weeding.

There is also a hang hole in the shovels for storing conveniently. What also impresses us is their premium aluminum alloy, making them relatively lightweight.

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With only 1.15 lbs, you can comfortably hold this effective tool when working for a long time. The hand trowel comes with a big head for displacing more dirt for faster work.

Moreover, you can rest assured of not getting hurt as the tip is smooth without a sharp corner or burr. It is perfect for excavation work like transplanting, tilling the tough soil, and planting.

Also, the trowel is excellent for transplanting flowers, and small plants, removing rocky soils. Even better, you can notice a measuring scale to get the correct depth with your plants, which is perfect for inexperienced gardeners.

And if you want to decompose soil over ventilation, remove weeds, mix soil with fertilizer, or clean up waste, its cultivator hand rake will help you all. It is thanks to its 7-mm sturdier claw body that can better resist breakage.

However, this set is not an ideal choice for heavy-duty garden tasks as it is small and not strong enough for heavy gardening.

What We Like

  • Ergonomic design
  • Lightweight premium aluminum alloy
  • Reducing wrist and hand fatigue when weeding
  • High-quality rubber handles
  • Smooth tips without shaft corner

What Can Be Improved?

  • Not ideal for heavy-duty tasks

Radius Garden 100 Ergonomic Aluminum Hand Trowel – Best For Joint Relieving

Radius Garden 100 Aluminium Hand Trowel - Rust-Proof –...
1,197 Reviews
Radius Garden 100 Aluminium Hand Trowel - Rust-Proof –...
  • Award-winning ergonomic garden trowel with unique, patented...
  • Ultra-lightweight, die-cast aluminum blade is stronger than...
  • Ergonomic Natural Radius Grip provides extra leverage and...

The next spot belongs to the Radius Garden 100 Hand Trowel for its support for arthritis. First, it comes with a comfortable and non-latex thermoplastic hand trowel grip.

This construction helps reduce stress on wrists and hands while maximizing leverage. You might not know this, but hand arthritis can make it hard to move the fingers and grasp things.

With a thermoplastic ergonomic radius design, this trowel will not cause any pressure to the hands for better joint relief when gardening. Besides, what makes this ergonomic shovel stand out among other products is an ultra-lightweight aluminum spade blade.

This spade blade is sturdier than steel and rust-proof when wiped clean. You will find it relatively easy to dig as it can provide the best grip for excellent maneuver and comfort.

On the downside, it would be better if this small shovel came with a more reinforced shaft to deal with hard terrain.

What We Like

  • Comfortable and non-latex hand trowel grip
  • Support arthritis to comfortably do gardening work
  • Ultra-lightweight aluminum spade blade
  • Excellent maneuverability and comfortability

What Can Be Improved?

  • Weak sharps

Hooyman Shovel with Heavy Duty Construction – Best For Heavy-Duty Work

Hooyman Spade Shovel with Heavy Duty Carbon Steel Head...
545 Reviews
Hooyman Spade Shovel with Heavy Duty Carbon Steel Head...
  • DIMENSIONS: 43 inches L x 5.75 inches W x 3 inches D and...
  • DURABLE: Heavy duty head construction of 1050MN carbon steel...
  • RELIABLE: Features the new, no-slip, H-Grip on the ergonomic...

Thanks to its highly sturdy construction, Hooyman Shovel deserves the “Best For Heavy-Duty Work” title. Mainly, the shovel is made of 1050MN steel.

This material can deliver optimal strength and toughness, making the shovel able to work in hard terrain. Besides, this heavy-duty shovel comes with an innovative custom serrated edge blade, ideal for scooping harder dirt or ground full of tough roots.

You will also love its new non-slip ergonomic handle to quickly turn tacky when it’s wet to guarantee a safe grip in every condition. There are oversized flanges on the blade’s sides to create a 2.5×2.25-inch W big-step for extra strength, making this metal shovel relatively easy to use.

The manufacturer also provides a lifetime warranty for this product. You can get support from their customer service team after several years of use.

Still, with a dimension of 60.25 x 9 x 3 inches and a weight of 4.5 lbs, you can find it quite heavy in your hands.

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What We Like

  • Ideal for heavy-duty work thanks to
  • 1050MN steel construction
  • Innovative custom blade serration
  • New and non-slip handle
  • Lifetime warranty

What Can Be Improved?

  • Heavy

Bully Tools 92400 Mulch/Snow Scoop – Best For Transfering

Bully Tools 92400 Snow/Grain Shovel. Fiberglass Dgrip...
136 Reviews
Bully Tools 92400 Snow/Grain Shovel. Fiberglass Dgrip...
  • 100% made in the USA
  • Commercial Grade
  • Limited lifetime

We will continue the list with the 92400 Scoop from Bully Tools. This scoop gains our hearts because of its ability to transfer all types of materials effortlessly.

An attribute to this bully tool’s capacity is a reinforced poly head designed to handle various surfaces, especially snow. There is also a highly sturdy triple wall fiberglass handle, paired with a comfortable D-grip handle.

These D-grips can deliver superior durability and comfort. Plus, as they are made of an exclusive non-break Polypropylene Co-polymer, you can hardly find a sturdier D-grip!

Last, the manufacturer is committed to producing all parts of this durable shovel in the USA and offers a limited lifetime warranty.

Nevertheless, we found that this snow shovel does not hang flat due to a bulging scoop, possibly annoying as it will not fit the storage cabinet.

What We Like

  • Ideal for transferring all types of materials
  • Reinforced poly head for ease of use
  • Superior durable and comfortable D-grips
  • 100% USA made
  • Limited lifetime warranty

What Can Be Improved?

  • Unavailable to hang flat

Tracey Garden Shovel – Best Environmentally-Friendly Shovel

Tracey Tools LLC Smart Shovel
64 Reviews
Tracey Tools LLC Smart Shovel
  • Tracey Tools round point Smart Shovel for digging,...
  • SMART DESIGN - Eco-friendly shovel has a built-in soil...
  • LONG FIBERGLASS HANDLE - Steel reinforced 3 mm thick handle...

We highly appreciate the Tracey Garden Shovel for its commitment to environmental ethics. This eco-friendly shovel comes with an integrated soil grater for reusing and aerating microbe-rich soil dug up from the earth.

Instead of soil disposing of after digging, you can grate and utilize it as the topsoil for the following landscape project.

The hand shovel gains another plus point for its 3mm reinforced long fiberglass handle, delivering high durability to avoid bending and flexing.

Its ergonomic 7-inch rubber grip also provides optimal comfort to protect your hands when gardening. Moreover, you will get more digging power thanks to an innovative high-step plate strengthened with two steel rods.

Accordingly, you can shovel much deeper with this extra leverage while still protecting your feet and back from injuries. But like the Hooyman shovel, this digging shovel is also heavy as it weighs up to 5.3 lbs.

What We Like

  • Environmental friendly with an integrated soil grater
  • 3mm reinforced long fiberglass handle for high durability
  • Innovative high-step plate
  • 7-inch rubber grip for optimal comfort

What Can Be Improved?

  • Heavy

N/N Shovel for Digging Shovel – Best For Ease Of Use

Offering user-friendly features, the N/N shovel deserves our last pick. It is already assembled by machines so that you can use it right out of the box. They are firmer and won’t fall off compared to the manual assembly of handles and heads.

Plus, this type of shovel can adapt to many environments, garden ditches, outdoor construction, camping, to name a few. We also like its perfect structure design with a D-handle for better grip.

Its spade shaft is made of sturdy fiberglass, while the head comes with high-carbon steel blade materials, increasing the product’s weighing performance.

One more thing, this edging shovel comes with a flat spade head so that you can do various kinds of tasks like shoveling dirt, adding fertilizer, leveling the land, or digging pits.

But everything has its pros and cons. This all-purpose shovel is no exception. This N’N flat shovel can gain a higher rank if it has a more extended handle to be easier on your back.

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What We Like

  • No required assembly
  • D-handle for better grip
  • Fiberglass spade shaft
  • High-carbon steel flat spade head

What Can Be Improved?

  • Short handle

Shovel Buying Guide

There are a few critical considerations when buying the proper shovel to meet your preference and demand.

What Are The Types Of Shovels?

Garden shovel

Garden shovel comes with rounded and concave blades coming to a point. It is handy, mainly used to dig holes in the soil, moving snow, soil, and any other loose material.

But for potted plants, it is not the best tool to use.

Garden spade

Top 7 Best Shovel For Gardeners - Buying Guide
“Fork and Spoon” by erix! is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Garden spade features slightly concave blades with flat edges. Though they are not an ideal option for digging holes, they help mark a trench, cutting through sod, or edging your lawn.

Garden scoop

Garden scoop is a wide and flat-bladed shovel whose blade rises into modest “walls” along the sides. It is perfect for moving compost, mulch, hay, dead leaves, or other light, loose materials.

Top 7 Best Shovel For Gardeners - Buying Guide
“Man holding small gardening shovel” by shixart1985 is licensed under CC BY 2.0

So if you want to dig big holes in the ground, it is better to consider other types of shovels.


A trowel is a garden tool for one-handed use. This type of shovel comes with a short handle and a long and shovel blade. It is best to dig in containers, make small holes for new plants, remove weeds, or transplant.

Thus, it is not ideal for large gardening jobs.

How To Choose The Best Garden Shovel


Almost all shovels or garden spades feature a steel blade, generally in the range of 10-12 inches long and 8-10 inches across—the shovels with the highest durability boast forged blades.

More affordable shovels regularly come with stamped steel blades. You have to pay twice as much for garden tools with forged blades, yet you will be satisfied with their longevity.

If you care for the tools properly, they can last for years or decades. Garden scoops are marked with an aluminum blade, making them lightweight but more prone to bending or denting.

Handle Length

Garden spades, scoops, and shovels boast handles ranging from 44-48 inches long. This length is comfortable for most gardeners.

Also, there are shorted-handled spades and shovels whose handles are somewhere between 18 and 24 inches. Meanwhile, long-handled tools offer better leverage, and they are well suited to various digging tasks and easier on the back of gardeners.

That said, when working in confined areas, short-handled shovels are better.

Handle Materials

Spade and shovel handles are made of three materials: steel, wood (i.e., ash or hickory), and fiberglass. Wooden-handled models are traditional shovels.

Garden growers prefer wooden handles for their look and feel. On the upside, this material is more affordable than fiberglass.

You will mainly pay 1/3 to 1/2 less for a wooden-handled shovel than for a fiberglass-handle model. That said, wood is much heavier than fiberglass, not ideal when you have to work for a long time.

Moreover, this gardening shovel is more prone to snapping or splintering from heavy-duty use. Garden shovels with steel handles cost nearly the same as fiberglass-handled tools.

They are the heaviest handle among the three materials but are much sturdier.


Most garden shovels with long handles weigh in the range of 5-8 lbs, top-down from wooden-handled shovels to fiberglass ones.

Though the ideal weight relies mainly on gardeners and endurance, heavier shovels are more durable.

In this video, Barry from Bunnings Warehouse talk about the different types of spades and shovels available and what types of digging jobs they are best suited for:

Final Thoughts

So you have finished our best shovel reviews, along with a complete buying guide. In short, these shovels can mainly meet your gardening needs while delivering optimal comfort and safety for your hands.

The Rhino USA Survival Shovel is our winner for its portable and compact design while delivering enhanced versatility for dealing with various types of terrain.

Anyway, we hope our article is helpful for you. If you have any further questions, please feel free to let us know.

Thank you for reading.

Last update on 2024-05-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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Jill Sandy

I am a sustainable focus gardener. I love decorating my home backyard with beautiful landscape design and creative garden care techniques I develop myself.