You are probably familiar with wood and metal drills but are probably not as familiar with the soil drills known as garden augers. These useful devices stand out in the ranks of specialty garden tools for the quick job they can make of many often encountered outdoor jobs.
Garden augers come in many sizes from smaller hand drill units designed to quickly drill little holes in the dirt, mostly for planting seeds or bulbs all the way up to the very large augers designed for quick planting of trees.
A small variable speed hand drill is sufficient for most of the smaller augers that are preferred amongst gardeners. The biggest augers may necessitate an extremely strong rotation force such as from a tractor shaft. In any case all augers require some kind of power to work.
The small garden augers are not designed to work in very compacted dry, very rocky soil or gravel but in previously cultivated soil an auger can greatly accelerate many tasks.
Augers are generally used for all kinds of planting in home gardens. The very biggest of augers necessitate heavy duty motors to be effective but they a necessity when you have a big planting job. Some of these can drill holes many feet deep and half a foot or more in diameter.
Never consider digging a fence post with a shovel again. Powered post hole digging augers are available at low cost from the majority of tool rental companies. You may require a friend to assist holding the auger but you will have a perfect hole in a few minutes without any back pain the next morning. The largest sizes of augers can be used to plant any size of fence posts.
The favorite size of garden auger is probably in the 1.5 to 3 inch range. These work with small, variable speed electric drills to very quickly create holes up to two feet deep for many uses. The most popular use is planting seeds and bulbs. Spring and summer bulbs can be properly placed in seconds and many other types of seedlings and bedding plants are planted just as quickly.
Garden augers can also be used for weeding. Nasty weeds that send roots deep into the ground are very difficult to remove with other garden tools but a good small auger can make it a snap.
Other uses typically include deep watering, fertilizing and aeration. Boring many deep, small holes under trees and shrubs lets fertilizers and water seep down into the ground where they do the most good and provide the longest lasting effect. Such deep holes also allow essential oxygen to get to the roots revitalizing older trees and bushes.
The longest garden auger is a valuable tool for running electrical wiring and PVC irrigation piping under sidewalks. Any task where you want to rapidly and easily drill a hole into the ground is a good use for the garden auger.
A popular manufacturer of garden augers is the Yard Butler Company of San Diego, California. They have been manufacturing high quality specialty garden tools for over fifty years. Listen to my advice and buy a quality auger made from top quality steel such as the augers made by Yard Butler so the auger will not break the first time you use it.
I have experienced that the garden augers offered in the big home supply chain stores seem to be poorly made in China with inferior metal and break or bend the first time you use them. Don't waste your money or your time. A quality garden auger will last for many years and pay for itself in the time you will save working in the garden.
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