9 Adaptive Tools To Make Gardening With Disabilities Easier
Gardening can be relaxing and therapeutic. These adaptive gardening tools help those with limitations enjoy their time in the garden.
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Ergonomic Garden Hand Tool Set
This Five-Piece Ergonomic Garden Hand Tool Set by Radius Garden makes weeding, digging, scooping and transplanting easier with its curved grips that prevent fatigue and wrist strain. This is especially important for those with weak hands or limited finger movement.
The shorter handles (8-1/2-inches) allow the visually impaired to work up close to the soil and plantings and feel one’s way through the garden. The fluorescent purple color makes the tools easy to locate, even in the shade.
Cordless Shrub Shear/Hedge Trimmer Combo
Weighing a little more than a pound, the portable, hand-held Earthwise Cordless Rechargeable Two-in-One Shrub Shear and Hedge Trimmer Combo allows you to trim while standing, kneeling or sitting. The mounting plates with blades are easy to change — just switch out the hedge trimmer for the grass shears by snapping it in place.
Ratchet Pruning Shears
Requiring much less hand strength to operate than traditional clippers, the Gardener’s Friend Ratchet Pruning Shears feature a distinctive ratchet mechanism based on leverage for quick and easy, one-handed cuts.
“This tool is perfect for my needs,” writes one Amazon reviewer. “I was able to cut back and slightly prune branches of my small trees easily. When the branches were just a bit larger, the ratchet adjusted with each squeeze and was able to cut through the small branch with no problem.”
Vertex Garden Rocker Rolling Seat
The Vertex Garden Rocker Rolling Seat is one of the most ergonomic and comfortable garden scooters on the market. Why? It lets the seated gardener tilt forward to easily reach plants. And it rolls smoothly from side to side so they don’t have to keep getting up and down. The seat height adjusts to allow more gardeners to do so independently.
One five-star reviewer on The Home Depot web site writes: “I injured my knee and the rolling seat solved my problem. It moves easily in my garden beds. The swivel feature makes it easy to reach without getting up and moving the seat.”
A power tool, like the cordless DeWalt 20V Max XR Pole Saw, is great for trimming high shrubs and tree branches without a ladder. The lightweight pole with comfort grip easily removes pruned branches with the tree hook. The saw extends to 10 feet and comes with a 20-volt battery, charger, tensioning wrench, sheath and three-foot extension pole.
Note: Always be certain you can handle the weight of a tool before using it. This pole saw weighs less than 10 lbs.
Long Reach Garden Tools
Lightweight with extra long shafts, the Peta Easi-Grip Long Reach Garden Tools (set of four) makes digging in soil from a scooter or wheelchair easier. Work without bending over and straining your back with these stainless-steel adaptive tools.
They feature non-slip handles (even when wet) with soft grips that are comfortable for arthritic hands. The set includes a hoe, cultivator, trowel and fork. An optional Arm Support Cuff, sold separately, allows your forearm strength to act as a counter-balance for more comfort and better leverage when digging.
Garden Kneeler and Seat
If you spend prolonged periods of time gardening, the XCSource Garden Kneeler and Seat provides a cushy, foam knee pad. When turned over, it becomes a sturdy seat with handles.
Made of strong steel tubing to support up to 300 lbs., the two-in-one convertible bench/knee cushion comes with two canvas side bags to hold gardening tools, a phone or water bottle. When not in use, this tool folds flat for space-saving storage. This kneeler/seat makes gardening more approachable and safer.
One Amazon reviewer writes: “The handles are sturdy and the perfect height to use for assistance going from kneeling to standing.”
Retractable Garden Hose Reel
Struggling with a garden hose is a thing of the past thanks to the Giraffe Tools Retractable Garden Hose Reel. Simply pull the hose out to the length you want and it automatically locks in place.
When you’re done watering, give it a little tug and it retracts the hose back into its 180-degree-pivoting reel housing. Plus, this hose reel comes with 100 feet of hose and a bracket for mounting!
PETA Easi-Grip Add-On Handles turn standard garden tools (with 2-1/2-in.-dia. shafts) into adaptive tools. These handles help you use your tools without straining your joints by keeping wrists and hands at a natural angle.
BONUS: Wheelchair-Accessible Elevated Garden Bed
Not all raised flower beds are created equal. Leveling the playing field is the Wheelchair Accessible Elevated Garden Bed by Gardener’s Supply Company.
Though not technically a “garden tool,” this ADA-compliant adaptive box provides ample wheelchair clearance underneath and features two shelves to accommodate various plant root lengths. Constructed of sturdy, pressure-treated cedar or cypress, tend plants from the furthest corners without uncomfortable or dangerous overreaching.
“Accessible to all. Great for small space gardening,!” writes Gardeners.com reviewer Josie, whose husband is a wheelchair user.