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Sunday, November 29, 2009

Leatherman Pruners?

I was looking on Amazon at some of the bestselling garden tools recently and I noticed this little tool that I found interesting: A Leatherman Pruning tool. It's a neat idea but as I pondered it I began to wonder exactly how useful it might be. Would it be able to replace my Swiss Army pocket knife I carry everywhere?


The Leatherman tool has pruners (which are a necessity in the garden), wire cutters, weed remover, grafting knife, bark lifter, Phillips screwdriver, saw, flat screwdriver, sprinkler tool, bottle opener, and a ruler. That's quite a few tools in one device but when I'm in the garden I usually don't need all of those tools very often. The one tool I would use the most would be the pruners which I'm pretty pleased with a pair of Fiskar pruners (Fiskars UltraBlade Traditional Bypass Pruner) I bought a couple months ago. I've needed wirecutters so rarely that I don't see need for them on the garden multitool tool, I'll just use the ones in my workbench. My Swiss army knife has the saw, screwdrivers, bottle opener and of course a more than adequate knife for whatever I need. The ruler would be handy but from seeing other Leatherman multitools I really think a good measuring tape is a much more functional choice. I'm trying to figure out what value the weed remover might be. In many cases killing weeds through boiling water, shovel, or simple weed pulling works fine. I doubt the weed remover is long enough to reach deep enough get to a dandelion or thistle taproot.

The multitool is missing one major garden tool which would make it much better, a simple pair of scissors. The scissors on my knife are one of the most useful tools I have. I use them for cuttings, for snipping twine, and for anything that needs a cut. I suppose the Leatherman tool is an attempt to help gardeners to reduce the amount of tools they carry in the garden. I'd rather just go with my pruners and my knife. Those two tools are much more functional paired together than one multitool and really aren't that inconvenient to carry, but that's just my opinion. What do you think? Is it a worthwhile tool for the garden or just a gimmick? What tools would you put in your Ultimate Garden Multitool?




2 comments :

  1. Wow, Dave, a Leatherman pruner would be tempting! But I have to say, there's great satisfaction in putting together my own multitools. Like you, my Fiskars pruner/lopper is probably my favorite pruner, outranking my iconic Felco pruners. My ideal garden multitool isn't a multitool at all but a sturdy canvas tote containing the Fiskars pruners, a sturdy and comfortable trowel, a propane flame torch to kill weeds between stones, bricks, and concrete slabs, a plastic grocery bag and a pair of Latex gloves for pulling noxious garden weeds and diseased plants and disposing of them, a second bag to hold non-invasive weeds and spent plants for the compost pile, and a Ziploc bag to contain any pests---at least, any pests not already serving as food for beneficial insects---until I can toss them in the chicken yard. Oh, and one of those great field guides that not only identifies weeds but discusses any beneficial uses as food, medicine, wildlife food, or ornament, so I don't throw something away that actually earns its keep.

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  2. Hi Dave

    I am not convinced about garden multitools, but a good pair of scissors does help!
    I do a lot of gardening and i am not convinced by the weed burners, as i feel the weeds that are eaily despatched can be easily pulled or dug out, but those which are more stubborn like the dandelion which have tap roots, dont seem to be bothered by having the top pulled , ripped or burnt off, they seem quite happy to recover and emerge to taunt the gardener.
    Your previous readers comment said he liked a good comfortable trowel, which i would agree with, but have not seen many around that i felt were good and comfortable, so i made one myself and used it for some time before people started to ask where they could get one just like it. I am now getting ready to produce the new trowel and fork, so any comments would be welcome, its called the Terrafirma tool. cheers
    Alan

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