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Easy to Use Garden Tools for Seniors

Updated on March 10, 2017
Our trusty little Greenworks saw
Our trusty little Greenworks saw

Combating Cabin Fever: My Weapon of Choice

I’m 73 years old now, and my husband is 76. Yesterday we went out into the woods surrounding our house and cut up some firewood from a tree that had fallen in the woods.

This wasn’t a necessity. We didn’t have to cut wood to survive here. We have central heat and air, or we could have called someone to deliver us a load of wood. But most of the land surrounding our home is wooded and there are almost always fallen limbs or trees that can be cut up for firewood.

The weather was bright and sunny, if a little chilly. We are still healthy and active, and the exercise was good for us. And the fireplace is very pleasant on these cold, snowy days.

What made this task much easier for us was our very reliable, small, light-weight, battery-operated chain saw. It’s a Greenworks with a 40V Lithium battery. Even though this saw is relatively small and light weight, it has a remarkable amount of power. It is not as powerful as a larger, gas-powered chainsaw, but is sufficient for the type of sawing we do around our property.

Besides its light weight, what also makes this saw easy for me to use is its ease of starting. I have been using a chain saw for years now, but I always had difficulty starting a gas powered saw and had to depend on my husband to start it for me. Once the battery is fully charged, all I have to do with this saw is pull a switch.

The only problem we have with this saw is that it must be filled with oil often. If using it for an extended period of time, this could be a real problem. We don’t usually spend that much time at one time, and are ready for a break when the saw needs to be refilled with oil but this could be a problem if you had a lot of wood to cut.

See How This Great Little Tool Works

Other Easy-to-Use Tools We Like

I also often had difficulty starting grass trimmers, so we have been using the battery operated models of those for years now. They are not as powerful as the gas powered models, but easier to start and lighter weight. One charge on a battery does not last as long as a tank of gas, but I don’t mind taking breaks while doing yard work.

The next battery operated tool I want to get is a pole saw. Maybe I’ll save enough money by not buying loads of wood that I can purchase one of those soon. It’s on my wish list.

Besides the battery operated pole saw, a couple of tools we hope to purchase are a wheelbarrow that makes loading and hauling large loads easier and a small, battery powered tiller.

Another tool that makes the work easier around our place is our automatically retracting hose reel. All you have to do is push a button on this hose reel and it retracts for you. That has always been one of my least favorite gardening chores. Not only is the hose automatically retracted but the water in the hose can be caught as the hose is retracting and used to water the garden.


A Favorite Non-Battery Operated Tool

Another tool we own that has been easy for both of us to use is a manual log splitter. I’ve just never had the power to swing an ax and split a log. My husband can do this, but at his age there is always a danger of tearing a rotator cuff.

Years ago, when I was still just dreaming of this place in the country, I saw an ad for a manual log splitter. In the ad, there was a testimonial from a woman who was 60 years old who said this tool was very easy for her to use.

That manual log splitter was the first gift my husband gave me after we met and he joined me to live here in our woods. (I happened to mention the ad I had seen just before Christmas.)

A List of Other Tools for Seniors We Have Not Tried Out Yet

  • Bionic Garden Gloves, granted the Arthritis Foundation’s Ease of Use Commendation, are designed with padding for extra comfort and improved grip strength. I don’t suffer from arthritis in my hands, but I’d still like to try these out. They just sound cool. And I think they’d go really well with my floppy garden hat.
  • Besides gloves, there are also garden tools designed to help reduce wrist and hand pain. Some of the brand names of these are Fist Grip Garden Tools, Hound Dog Garden Tools, and Radius Garden Tools. I think the Hound Dog Garden Tools would be go well with the Bionic Garden Gloves—and my floppy garden hat.
  • One of the frustrating things about aging is the increasing difficulty of getting up once you are down in a kneeling or sitting position. The Tractor Scoot is designed to help with this problem since it allows you to sit comfortably while gardening and steer around garden beds without having to get up.
  • Raised beds, window boxes, hanging baskets with pulleys to raise and lower, or deck railing boxes offer alternative gardening opportunities for those with increasing difficulty in moving.

One of our favorite places to sit in our yard after the work is completed.
One of our favorite places to sit in our yard after the work is completed.

Taking It All In

Finally, one of the most important garden devices is a place in the shade to admire all of your handiwork--a hammock under a shade tree, or perhaps some sturdily built gliders like these we bought from our local Mennonite craftsman. And how about some John Prine music to round out a perfect day. I've taught this song to all of our granddaughters. It's a frequent refrain around here.

Since one of my loves of life is to be out with nature, any tool that I find that makes pursuing this activity for as long as possible will be welcomed. I’m certainly a big fan of the battery operated tools that we own that make starting and maintaining our tools so much easier.


Here's John Prine

Comments

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    • grand old lady profile image

      Mona Sabalones Gonzalez 

      10 months ago from Philippines

      May I know about the two gray chairs in the picture? Are they tractor scoots? They look very nice and as if they also have wheels. Overall, these are wonderful tools for seniors. I'm not good in gardening but lately I fixed up my pocket garden. It's lovely to look at -- hope this one survives.

    • jo miller profile imageAUTHOR

      Jo Miller 

      21 months ago from Tennessee

      Thanks, Mona. We do love working on our land here.

    • grand old lady profile image

      Mona Sabalones Gonzalez 

      21 months ago from Philippines

      You are so lucky to have a green thumb and this made the article most enjoyable to read, because you obviously know what you are talking about. I am not familiar with any of the tools you mention so it was a learning experience. I also appreciated the end, when you said to get chairs so you can enjoy your garden, plus the fact that you have a wonderful Mennonite craftsman. Even if plants die under my care, this was a pleasure to read and very informative:).

    • jo miller profile imageAUTHOR

      Jo Miller 

      21 months ago from Tennessee

      I like to buy tools for my husband as gifts, even when he doesn't know he wants them.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      21 months ago from Olympia, WA

      I love tools. I didn't particularly love them when I was younger, but now that I'm older I love working with them, the circular saw, the jig saw, cutting and trimming and building....I love it all. :)

    • jo miller profile imageAUTHOR

      Jo Miller 

      24 months ago from Tennessee

      Glenis, those garden gloves do sound cool, don't they. I haven't tried them yet either.

    • jo miller profile imageAUTHOR

      Jo Miller 

      24 months ago from Tennessee

      Thanks, John, for stopping by to visit. We do remain very busy here, but it is what I love to do.

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 

      2 years ago from SW England

      Just revisited this, Jo, and it seems I should now get some of those bionic gloves. Going to look them up!

      Ann

    • Glenis Rix profile image

      GlenR 

      2 years ago from UK

      Some excellent suggestions. I might need to try to source the gloves soon.

    • jwmurph profile image

      jwmurph 

      2 years ago from Tennessee

      You certainly seem busy in your little corner of the world, and have great suggestions for tools to work with for us 'older' people. Thanks a lot for all of this info.

    • jo miller profile imageAUTHOR

      Jo Miller 

      2 years ago from Tennessee

      With five acres, electric is not very practical here, but I like our battery operated tools a lot.

    • Larry Rankin profile image

      Larry Rankin 

      2 years ago from Oklahoma

      Very interesting.

      Personally I have always hated gas oil mixture tools. That's one of the reasons I often choose electric.

    • jo miller profile imageAUTHOR

      Jo Miller 

      3 years ago from Tennessee

      We love these tools, but I would have loved them when I was younger also. Hope your parents enjoy the gifts.

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 

      3 years ago from USA

      Excellent choices and useful too. My parents are about the same age and still very vital outdoorsy people who insist on doing things themselves. You've given me some gift ideas!

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 

      3 years ago from SW England

      We're in Somerset, south of Bristol. I know the whole of the south pretty well; my mother was from Sussex and that's where I was brought up. However my father and his parents were northerners, from Yorkshire, Tyneside and Durham. My sister lives in Yorkshire. I've also lived in Hampshire, Wales and Cheshire! My heart still lies in Sussex but I love Somerset and this is where I'll stay as it's a much slower pace of life!

      Ann

    • jo miller profile imageAUTHOR

      Jo Miller 

      3 years ago from Tennessee

      Bill, I personally like the term the Chinese use to describe us. They call us 'the experienced ones'. I'll take that one.

    • jo miller profile imageAUTHOR

      Jo Miller 

      3 years ago from Tennessee

      Ann, that sounds wonderful. Where are you located in England? We enjoyed our drive through your country a few years back. One of our best trips yet.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Clever title! I'm not ready to accept the label "senior" despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary. lol

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 

      3 years ago from SW England

      Love the bionic garden gloves! If all goes well with our purchase, we are about to buy a house which needs lots doing to it before we move in (then we sell this one!). The garden needs so much sorting out that I think those gloves would be wonderful.

      We're probably going to have a wood-burning stove. There will be plenty of small logs by the time we've finished pruning trees and shrubs but we have an added bonus, much like your wood, which is the beach - there is a lot of driftwood washed up all the time so that should keep us going through the winter months!

      We have similar tools available here and are fortunate enough to have most of them already - my partner is a dab hand at diy etc so I'm hoping to concentrate on the garden! He's 74 and I'm coming up to 65.

      Thanks for the good read.

      Ann

    working

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