Essential Indoor Gardening Tools

Whether you have just a few pots or a house plant jungle, you'll need some essential indoor gardening tools to keep your plants healthy and happy.

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Bypass Pruner

Apart from your fingers, a good bypass pruner like the Fiskars PowerGear2 UltraBlade Softgrip pruner may be the most important garden tool in your toolkit. This type of pruner works like scissors to make a clean cut.

Its ergonomic, contoured handle provides such a comfortable grip that it’s earned the Arthritis Foundation’s Ease of Use Commendation. You’ll only need one hand to engage the safety lock, and the short steel blades have a bonded coating to keep them sharp five times longer.

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Needle-Nose Pruner

More substantial than garden scissors but less cumbersome than a bypass pruner, a needle-nose pruner is great for getting into hard-to-reach spots. Its pointed blades make it perfect for precise trimming and pruning. Easy on the hands, the small, lightweight ARS Needle-Nose Pruner offers a comfortable grip and two-inch replaceable stainless steel blades that lock when closed for safe storage.

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Traditional Hand Trowel

A gardening staple for potting things up, the traditional hand trowel’s curved shape is ideal for scooping and moving small amounts of soil and fertilizer. With its thick ergonomic handle and thumb rest, the multifunctional Garden Guru super-strong garden scoop trowel will become your indoor gardening workhorse, a go-to helper for most of your digging and planting.

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Pointed Hand Trowel

With its pointed tip, the heavy-duty stainless steel Wilcox All-Pro hand trowel enables nearly effortless cutting. A useful depth gauge stamped on the surface, in centimeters and inches, helps you measure the depth of your hole or cut, while the ribbed plastic handle provides a comfortable grip for this garden hand tool.

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Soil Scoop

The hand trowel’s bigger sibling, a soil scoop’s larger capacity makes it better suited for picking up more material. With its ergonomic ash-wood handle, the stainless steel FITOOL Scoop is comfy to hold and nice to look at.

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Pruning Scissors

Straight-tip pruning scissors, like the Happy Hydro trimming scissors, offer most precise pruning tool in your indoor garden toolbox. Longer handles make it easy to reach tight, narrow areas, eliminating the need to move your potted plant.

Lightweight with a comfortable rubberized grip, the razor-sharp Teflon-coated blades with ultra-fine points are ideal for delicate pruning and great for deadheading African violets.

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Soil Knife

Houseplants need repotting every 12 to 18 months to replenish the soil. Spring is a good time to transplant when sunlight is plentiful and plants are actively growing.

With its dual straight- and serrated-edge blade, the multipurpose Haushof Hori Hori garden knife is perfect for removing the plant from its pot and cutting out any dried-out roots before transplanting. For those who aim for precision, the knife’s graduated markings in inches and millimeters are useful for measuring the correct soil depth.

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Hand Fork

Although some gardeners rely on a trowel for digging or aerating soil, others swear by the hang fork. The lightweight DeWit forged hand fork‘s sharp prongs make it easy to break up hardened soil before adding fertilizer. Bonus: It comes with a lifetime guarantee.

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Watering Can

With a comfortable ergonomic handle and modern design that doubles as a decorative home accessory, the stainless steel Fasmov 51Watering Can sports a long stem spout that allows you to control water flow and more easily water hard to reach plants.

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Plant Mister

Misting plants helps increase humidity in the air and remove sunlight-blocking dust from foliage. A gentle squeeze from the Alpree sprayer and mister releases a continuous burst of fine mist with 360 degree coverage, whether held upright or upside down.

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Pastry Brush

A pastry brush isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about indoor gardening tools, but a great houseplant parent I know swears by hers for dusting off fuzzy leaves, like those on African violets. Who knew? With its soft, ultra-fine reinforced boar bristles, the Avant Grub Pastry Brush gently does the trick. Your plants will love you for it.

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Indoor Gardening Gloves

There’s nothing wrong with a little dirt under your nails, but you may not like it when gardening indoors. The next best thing to bare hands, the nitrile-coated Sleek Garden bamboo gardening gloves are super thin and flexible. Made of breathable and eco-friendly bamboo, these garden gloves are also touchscreen-friendly, so there’s no need to remove them when a call or text interrupts your plant maintenance routine.

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Combination Soil Probe, Light Meter and pH Tester

Admittedly, this is not essential but it is helpful. The multi-functional Atree Three-in-One soil tester kit provides information on moisture, light and pH to help you properly care for your plants.

Knowing when they need water and if they’re getting enough sunlight is key. A balanced pH (the degree of acidity or alkalinity) enables optimal absorption of nutrients necessary for healthy plant growth. Most houseplants thrive in a neutral soil pH between 6.0 and 7.5.

For more, check out our list of the best indoor gardening kits, too.

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Robin Plaskoff Horton
Robin Horton is an award-winning writer and publisher of Webby-nominated design, lifestyle and travel blog, Urban Gardens. In addition to brand-sponsored blog content, Robin has written for brands/publications including Trivago,, Fiskars, Kellogg Garden Products, Easy Digging, SunGro, and Midwest Living Magazine. Robin has more than a decade of experience as an SME in home and garden design and décor, sustainable living, and garden tourism. She has expertise in sourcing products and creating shopping-focused content, including affiliate marketing product roundups and gift guides.