Soil Scoop by Donald Burger, Houston, TX
The Soil Scoop
by Donald Ray Burger
Attorney at Law

I love tools. And gadgets. And especially garden tools and gadgets. Even so, when I saw the Soil Scoop I was skeptical that I needed yet another hand trowel or that anyone could make so many improvements to such a simple implement. But the stainless steel seemed thick enough to not bend in our Houston gumbo, and it was oh so shiny. The scooped shape was intriguing and the serrated edges were different. So I bought one and took it home.

After trying it once, the reservations vanished. This is the best thought-out trowel I've seen. In fact, it has so many innovations that even referring to it as a trowel is unfair. The steel is thick enough to not bend under heavy duty. The end comes to a sharp point to help penetrate hard soil. The body of the tool has a deep scoop that allows it to hold more dirt per load. It also has a curve that makes scooping soil out of a four or five inch hole easy. The serrated edges make enlarging holes in Houston's gumbo almost effortless. The serrations are also excellent for opening plastic bags of mulch or compost.

I don't want to wax too poetic about this tool. But I do want you to try one. I got mine for around $16.00 at Southwest Fertilizer at 5828 Bissonnet, Houston, Texas 77081 (713-666-1744). It should also be available on their website at I Also noticed that Smith & Hawken sells it in their catalogue (800-776-3336). The Soil Scoop is manufactured by Garden Works Perennial Products, 1551 127th Pl. NE, Bellevue, WA 98005 (425 455 0568). They've done an exceptional job with this trowel. After trying it once, you won't want to go back to the ordinary hand trowel again. Give it a try.

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