In the confusing world of specialty gardening tools, one little known tool stands out for the many jobs it will accomplish. The tool I'm speaking of is the garden auger. A garden auger is just a steel drill specially designed for drilling in the soil as opposed to wood or metal.
You easily can find garden augers in an extensive range of sizes. The largest are intended for rapidly planting trees and even telephone poles. The small ones are for garden use, drilling small holes most for properly planting seeds, bulbs and smaller plants.
A small variable speed hand drill is all that's required for most of the smaller augers that are preferred amongst gardeners. The largest augers may require a really powerful rotation force for example from a tractor shaft. In all cases all augers involve some kind of power to work.
Even though a garden auger works well with tilled and moistened soil they are not intended for very rocky conditions. Gravel and very dry and compact soil will probably prove too tough for most augers. Try wetting the soil for several days first.
The most popular job for the garden auger is probably planting. Some of the largest augers can rapidly drill holes in the dirt up to six inches in diameter and many feet deep. This is plenty big for planting most saplings. A heavy duty, pro-grade electric drill is minimally required for effectively using these large augers.
Never consider digging a fence post by hand again. Powered post hole digging augers are available at reasonable cost from the majority of tool rental companies. You may need a friend to assist holding the auger but you will have a perfect hole in a matter of minutes without any back pain the next morning. The biggest sizes of augers can be used to plant any size of fence posts.
A very rapid method to plant spring and summer bulbs in addition to many bedding plants and seedlings to use the auger to create the correct sized hole then place the bulbs, seeds or plants. The very popular garden augers varying from about three inches down to less than two inches are just right for this type of project. You'll need a small, variable speed drill to power the auger and it can make holes from a few inches up to two feet deep to make really quick work of planting.
Garden augers can even be used for removing difficult weeds. Nasty weeds that produce deep roots are very difficult to get out with any other tool but a good small auger can make it a snap.
Bushes and trees, in particular older and established bushes and trees, need regular deep fertilizing, aeration and watering. Small deep holes drilled around these plants will give nutrients, water and life-giving oxygen to the roots and will often bring back life and vitality to older plants. Use your garden auger to drill many deep holes under the trees or shrubs in advance of applying fertilizer and then watering.
A longer garden auger is a useful tool for running electrical wiring and PVC irrigation piping under sidewalks. Any task where you want to quickly and easily drill a hole into the ground is a good use for the garden auger.
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