In addition to Dutch hoes, there are plenty of other types on the market but which one is best for you?
Personally, I think it’s hard to beat a Dutch hoe for weeding, especially between rows. A lot depends on what you’re growing, the space you have and whether on the level or in a raised bed. In our April 2016 issue the editorial team was able to try out a range of different hoes. My personal favourite was the Speedhoe which was sent to us by Haxnicks (www.haxnicks.co.uk). I really liked its sharp, pointed edges and the way it cut into some really recalcitrant weeds. Perfect for hoeing between rows – merciless in its effectiveness.
Sneerboer Raised Bed Hoe
Another one which we really liked was the Sneerboer Raised Bed Hoe from Harrod Horticultural (www.harrodhorticultural.com), perfect for smaller raised beds. This hand tool is 60cm (24in) long and has a curved end. These two combined means that you can use it with one hand but still get quite a lot of traction when pulling it through the soil.
Sophie Conran Ergo Hoe
This is a hand tool from www.burgonandball.com, good for weeding between rows either on a small raised bed or at ground level. The blade was very sharp and the curved head was at a perfect angle for pulling through the soil.
These always remind me of putting irons in golf. The ones were tried out weren’t particularly sharp but they were quite good for getting in between rows as you can work the blade to different angles. Wilkinson Sword have a stainless steel one with a nice ash handle (www.wilkinsonsword-tools.co.uk).
It will also, of course, depend on your budget but there’s plenty of choice and you should find something that suits the size of your wallet.